Chronic myeloid leukemic cells. Positive effects from wheatgrass

Antiproliferative and apoptotic effects of wheatgrass (Triticum aestivum L.) extracts on chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) cell line.

Karadag, A., Ozkan, T., Altinok, B., Aydos, S., Sunguroglu, A. 2007. Planta Med. 73


Wheatgrass (Triticum aestivum L.) is a rich source of vitamins, antioxidants and minerals and it has higher phenolic and flavonoid content in the ethanol extracts than water extracts. Flavonoids in general have been shown to have anticarcinogenic, antimutagenic, properties. Chronic Myeloid Leukemia(CML) is a malignant hematopoietic stem cell disorder that is characterized by BCR-ABL fusion gene encodes cytoplasmic BCR-ABL oncoprotein with a constitutive tyrosine kinase activity that enhances the proliferation and antiapoptotic capacity of affected cell clone. Antiproliferative and apoptotic effects of wheatgrass has not been studied yet. Here we report the effect of wheatgrass extract on CML cell viability, proliferation and apoptosis. 32Dp210 (BCR-ABL fusion gene (+) mouse CML cell line) and 32D (wild type mouse myeloid cell line) cells were grown in RPMI 1640 medium. Cells were incubated with wheatgrass ethanol extracts at final concentrations of 6.5% (w/v) and 13% (w/v) at 0,24,48,72 hours. Cell viability was detected by MTT and trypan blue assays. Apoptosis was determined morphologically and DNA laddering. Both of the concentrations were found to be statistically different (p<0.001) in respect to their antiproliferative and apoptotic effects than their controls. The results showed that the wheatgrass extract inhibited growth of 32Dp210 cells in a dose dependent manner compared to the control cell line(32D). At 6.5% (w/v) and 13% (w/v) concentrations of wheatgrass extracts induced apoptosis at 72, 24 hours respectively. In this study, it has been calculated that the death risk of 32Dp210 was found 6.2 times higher than 32D. It is concluded that wheatgrass extract inhibits proliferation of 32Dp210 cells through the induction of apoptosis.

A note from Dr. Chris Reynolds:

Apoptosis essentially means cell death. Cell turnover rate in the body is high. Old, unhealthy, damaged or dangerous e.g. leukemic cells are continously being destroyed and recycled. In this study, wheatgrass extract, similar to Supershots, was found to reduce the rate of increase of leukemic cell numbers by enhancing the natural processes responsible for destroying those cells. (apoptosis)