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Anti-estrogenic Activities of Indole 3 Carbinol Powder-Ⅱ
- Sep 10, 2019 -

Anti-estrogenic activities

Endogenous estrogens are steroid hormones synthesized by humans and other mammals.

Inhibition of estrogen signaling

Endogenous estrogens, including 17β-estradiol, exert their estrogenic effects by binding to specific nuclear receptors called estrogen receptors (ERs). Within the nucleus, estrogen-activated ERs can bind to specific DNA sequences, known as estrogen response elements (EREs), in the promoters of estrogen-responsive genes. ERE-bound estrogen-ER complexes act as transcription factors by recruiting coactivator proteins and chromatin remodeling factors to promoters, thereby triggering the transcription of target genes. There are two major ER subtypes, ERα and ERβ, coded by two separate genes ESR1 and ESR2, respectively. ERα is the main driver of the proliferative effect of estrogens, while the expression of ERβ has been inversely associated with mammary gland tumorigenesis. Elevated ERα levels promote cellular proliferation in the breast and uterus, possibly increasing the risk of developing estrogen-sensitive cancers.

Inhibition of estrogen-dependent cell proliferation

In estrogen-sensitive human breast cancer cells challenged with 17β-estradiol, I3C has been found to inhibit the transcription of estrogen-responsive genes without binding to either ERβ or ERα. In fact, the binding of I3C to AhR was shown to trigger the proteasome-dependent degradation of ERα. I3C-induced loss of ERα resulted in the downregulation of ERα-responsive gene products like the transcription factor GATA3. Since GATA3 regulates the transcription of the ERα coding gene ESR1, I3C prevented the synthesis of new ERα transcripts and proteins, eventually abolishing the ERα signaling pathway. The disruption of the GATA3/ERα cross-regulatory loop by I3C ultimately halted ERα-dependent cell proliferation. Acid condensation products of I3C that bind and activate AhR may also inhibit the transcription of estrogen-responsive genes by competing for co-activators or increasing ERα degradation. I3C treatment also affected the expression of other ERα-responsive genes, including those coding for insulin-like growth factor-1 receptor (IGFR1) and insulin receptor substrate-1 (IRS-1), involved in cell proliferation and deregulated in breast cancer (Figure 5).


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