Determination of in vitro Markers of Apoptosis in Breast Cancer Cells Following Chemical Treatments
There are five types of breast cancer. Triple-positive breast cancer is positive for estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor, and human epidermal growth factor (HER2), and is responsive to chemical compounds. Triple-negative breast cancers lack these receptors and as a result treatment options are limited. As such, the mainstay of treatment is traditional chemotherapy. Treatments for breast cancer include chemical compounds. Some of these chemicals induce apoptosis and destroy the cells. Distinguishing how markers in the apoptosis pathway are manipulated from treatment is desirable because as one marker changes, hundreds of other markers could change as a result. This study focused on inducing apoptosis in both types of breast cancer with two different chemicals, honokiol and tamoxifen. The concentration at which both compounds induce apoptosis and how they change the in vitro markers of apoptosis was of interest. Tamoxifen induced apoptosis in both cell lines, while honokiol did not appear to induce apoptosis in either cell line. RT-PCR was utilized to determine the change in the markers of apoptosis in the triple-positive cell line. One marker of apoptosis decreased in response to 12.5µM honokiol while five markers increased expression.