A Practical Synthesis and X-ray Crystallographic Analysis of Dithymoquinone, a Photodimer of Thymoquinone.
ABSTRACT: An updated and practical approach to the synthesis of dithymoquinone via one-step photoirradiation of thymoquinone (2-methyl-5-isopropyl-1,4-benzoquinone) is described. Synthesis resulted in a 55% yield of one structural isomer (trans-anti derivative), as confirmed by HPLC, NMR spectroscopy and first ever single-crystal X-ray diffraction analyses.
Project description:Thymoquinone (TQ, 2-methyl-5-isopropyl-1,4-benzoquinone), a bioactive constituent extracted from the seeds of Nigella sativa, has been proved to exert anti-tumor efficiency in various cancers. Autophagy is a self-digestion phenomenon, and its role in tumor formation and progression remains controversial. In the present study, we investigated the effects of TQ on renal cell cancer (RCC) cell lines (786-O and ACHN) using wound healing assay, transwell assay and western blot analysis. We found that TQ effectively inhibited the metastatic capacity of RCC cells in vitro, which was also verified in a xenograft model. Meanwhile, we observed LC3 puncta and detected the expression of LC3 in TQ-treated RCC cells, and then found that autophagy was induced by TQ in 786-O and ACHN cell lines. In addition, TQ inhibited the migration and invasion as well as the EMT in RCC cells in an autophagy-dependent manner. To further explore the underlying mechanism, we detected the AMPK/mTOR signaling pathway. The results indicated that TQ inhibited the metastasis of RCC cells by inducing autophagy via AMPK/mTOR signaling pathway. In conclusion, our findings provide a novel therapeutic strategy that aims at TQ-induced autophagy in RCC treatment.
Project description:The seeds of Nigella sativa (often referred to as black seed) have long been utilized as a medicinal herb in Middle Eastern, Northern African, and Indian cultures. Historically, black seed has been used to treat a variety of illnesses associated with inflammation. More recent studies have found that it induces apoptosis and displays anticancer activity in animal and cellular models. The major bioactive compound of black seed is thymoquinone, which shares structural features with 1,4-benzoquinone and other covalent topoisomerase II poisons. Because a number of anticancer drugs target type II topoisomerases, we determined the effects of thymoquinone and a series of related quinones on human topoisomerase IIα. Thymoquinone enhanced enzyme-mediated DNA cleavage ~5-fold, which is similar to the increase seen with the anticancer drug etoposide. In order to enhance cleavage, compounds had to have at least two positions available for acylation. Furthermore, activity was decreased by the inclusion of electron-donating groups or bulky substituents. As predicted for a covalent topoisomerase II poison, the activity of thymoquinone (and related compounds) was abrogated by the addition of a reducing agent. Also, thymoquinone inhibited topoisomerase IIα activity when incubated with the enzyme prior to the addition of DNA. Cleavage complexes formed in the presence of the compound were stable for at least 8 h. Lastly, black seed extract and black seed oil both increased levels of enzyme-mediated DNA cleavage, suggesting that thymoquinone is active even in more complex herbal formulations. These findings indicate that thymoquinone can be added to the growing list of dietary and medicinal natural products with activity against human type II topoisomerases.
Project description:Thymoquinone (TQ), a natural compound with antimicrobial and antitumor activity, was used as the starting molecule for the preparation of 3-aminothymoquinone (ATQ) from which ten novel benzoxazole derivatives were prepared and characterized by elemental analysis, IR spectroscopy, mass spectrometry and NMR (¹H, 13C) spectroscopy in solution. The crystal structure of 4-methyl-2-phenyl-7-isopropyl-1,3-benzoxazole-5-ol (1a) has been determined by X-ray diffraction. All compounds were tested for their antibacterial, antifungal and antitumor activities. TQ and ATQ showed better antibacterial activity against tested Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacterial strains than benzoxazoles. ATQ had the most potent antifungal effect against Candida albicans, Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Aspergillus brasiliensis. Three benzoxazole derivatives and ATQ showed the highest antitumor activities. The most potent was 2-(4-fluorophenyl)-4-methyl-7-isopropyl-1,3-benzoxazole-5-ol (1f). Western blot analyses have shown that this compound inhibited phosphorylation of protein kinase B (Akt) and Insulin-like Growth Factor-1 Receptor (IGF1R ?) in HeLa and HepG2 cells. The least toxic compound against normal fibroblast cells, which maintains similar antitumor activities as TQ, was 2-(4-chlorophenyl)-4-methyl-7-isopropyl-1,3-benzoxazole-5-ol (1e). Docking studies indicated that 1e and 1f have significant effects against selected receptors playing important roles in tumour survival.
Project description:The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the neuroprotective efficacy of optimized thymoquinone loaded PLGA-chitosan nanoparticles delivered via nose to brain route in the rodent cerebral ischemia-reperfusion model. The neuroprotective efficacy of the optimized thymoquinone loaded PLGA-chitosan nanoparticles was evaluated in middle cerebral artery occluded rats by various pharmacodynamic and biochemical studies. The pharmacokinetics of thymoquinone loaded PLGA-chitosan nanoparticles in the brain and blood plasma together with qualitative localization of florescent labelled PLGA-chitosan nanoparticles in brain tissues were also determined. Intranasal delivery of optimized thymoquinone loaded PLGA-chitosan nanoparticles (183.5 ± 8.2?nm, 33.63 ± 2.25?mV) to brain significantly reduced the ischemia infarct volume and enhanced the locomotor activity and grip strength in the middle cerebral artery occluded rats. Biochemical studies showed that intranasal delivery of thymoquinone loaded PLGA-chitosan nanoparticles significantly reduced the lipid peroxidation but elevated the glutathione, catalase, and superoxide dismutase in the brain of middle cerebral artery occluded rats. The pharmacokinetic and localization studies showed that thymoquinone loaded PLGA-chitosan nanoparticles facilitated the delivery of thymoquinone to brain by intranasal nose to brain transport pathways and enhanced their pharmacokinetic profile in brain tissues. Thus, intranasal delivery of thymoquinone loaded PLGA-chitosan nanoparticles to brain could be potentially used for the neuroprotection and treatment of cerebral ischemia.
Project description:Fasciolosis an economically important global disease of ruminants in the temperate and tropical regions, caused by Fasciola hepatica and F. gigantica, respectively, also poses a potential zoonotic threat. In India alone it causes huge losses to stakeholders. Anthelmintics including triclabendazole have been used to control this menace but the emerging resistance against the available compounds necessitates identification of novel and alternative therapeutic measures involving plant derived natural compounds for their anthelmintic potential. Thymoquinone (T) and curcumin (C), the active ingredients of Nigella sativa and Curcuma longa respectively have been used as antiparasitic agents but the information on their flukicidal effect is very limited. Adult flukes of F. gigantica were in vitro exposed to different concentrations of thymoquinone and curcumin separately for 3h at 37+ 1°C. A significant (p<0.05) reduction in the worm motility at 60 ?M concentration of both T and C was observed though all the worms remained alive after 3h exposure, whereas the effect on egg shedding was statistically insignificant. Pronounced tegumental disruptions and erosion of spines in the posterior region and around the acetabulum was evident. A significant (p<0.05) decrease in glutathione-S-transferase and superoxide dismutase activity and reduced glutathione (GSH) level was observed, while protein carbonylation increased differentially. A significant inhibition of CathepsinL (CatL) gene expression in thymoquinone treated worms was also evident. Further, in silico molecular docking of T and C with CatL revealed a stronger interaction of curcumin with the involvement of higher number of amino acids as compared to thymoquinone that could be more effective in inhibiting the antioxidant enzymes of F. gigantica. It is concluded that both the compounds understudy will decrease the detoxification ability of F. gigantica, while inhibition of CatL will significantly affect their virulence potential. Thus, both thymoquinone and curcumin appeared to be promising anthelmintic compounds for further investigations.
Project description:Lynch syndrome is caused by germline mutations in DNA mismatch repair genes leading to microsatellite instability (MSI) and colorectal cancer. Mesalazine, commonly used for the treatment of UC, reduces MSI in vitro. Here, we tested natural compounds for such activity and applied mesalazine and thymoquinone in a Msh2(loxP/loxP) Villin-Cre mouse model for Lynch syndrome.Flow cytometry was used for quantitation of mutation rates at a CA13 microsatellite in human colon cancer (HCT116) cells that had been stably transfected with pIREShyg2-enhanced green fluorescent protein/CA13, a reporter for frameshift mutations. Mice were treated for 43?weeks with mesalazine, thymoquinone or control chow. Intestines were analysed for tumour incidence, tumour multiplicity and size. MSI testing was performed from microdissected normal intestinal or tumour tissue, compared with mouse tails and quantified by the number of mutations per marker (NMPM).Besides mesalazine, thymoquinone significantly improved replication fidelity at 1.25 and 2.5?µM in HCT116 cells. In Msh2(loxP/loxP) Villin-Cre mice, tumour incidence was reduced by mesalazine from 94% to 69% (p=0.04) and to 56% (p=0.003) by thymoquinone. The mean number of tumours was reduced from 3.1 to 1.4 by mesalazine (p=0.004) and to 1.1 by thymoquinone (p<0.001). Interestingly, MSI was reduced in normal intestinal tissue from 1.5 to 1.2 NMPM (p=0.006) and to 1.1 NMPM (p=0.01) by mesalazine and thymoquinone, respectively. Thymoquinone, but not mesalazine, reduced MSI in tumours.Mesalazine and thymoquinone reduce tumour incidence and multiplicity in Msh2(loxP/loxP) Villin-Cre mice by reduction of MSI independent of a functional mismatch repair system. Both substances are candidate compounds for chemoprevention in Lynch syndrome mutation carriers.
Project description:Down-regulation of UHRF1 (Ubiquitin-like containing PHD and Ring Finger 1) in Jurkat cells, induced by natural anticancer compounds such as thymoquinone, allows re-expression of tumor suppressor genes such as p73 and p16INK4A . In order to decipher the mechanisms of UHRF1 down-regulation, we investigated the kinetic of expression of HAUSP (herpes virus-associated ubiquitin-specific protease), UHRF1, cleaved caspase-3 and p73 in Jurkat cells treated with thymoquinone. We found that thymoquinone induced degradation of UHRF1, correlated with a sharp decrease in HAUSP and an increase in cleaved caspase-3 and p73. UHRF1 concomitantly underwent a rapid ubiquitination in response to thymoquinone and this effect was not observed in the cells expressing mutant UHRF1 RING domain, suggesting that UHRF1 commits an auto-ubiquitination through its RING domain in response to thymoquinone treatment. Exposure of cells to Z-DEVD, an inhibitor of caspase-3 markedly reduced the thymoquinone-induced down-regulation of UHRF1, while proteosomal inhibitor MG132 had no such effect. The present findings indicate that thymoquinone induces in cancer cells a fast UHRF1 auto-ubiquitination through its RING domain associated with HAUSP down-regulation. They further suggest that thymoquinone-induced UHRF1 auto-ubiquitination followed by its degradation is a key event in inducing apoptosis through a proteasome-independent mechanism.
Project description:Thymoquinone (2-isopropyl-5-methylbenzo-1,4-quinone) is a major bioactive component of Nigella sativa, a plant used in traditional medicine to treat a variety of symptoms, including elevated blood glucose levels in type 2 diabetic patients. Normalization of elevated blood glucose depends on both glucose disposal by peripheral tissues and glucose-stimulated insulin secretion (GSIS) from pancreatic ?-cells. We employed clonal ?-cells and rodent islets to investigate the effects of thymoquinone (TQ) and Nigella sativa extracts (NSEs) on GSIS and cataplerotic metabolic pathways implicated in the regulation of GSIS. TQ and NSE regulated NAD(P)H/NAD(P)(+) ratios via a quinone-dependent redox cycling mechanism. TQ content was positively correlated with the degree of redox cycling activity of NSE extracts, suggesting that TQ is a major component engaged in mediating NSE-dependent redox cycling. Both acute and chronic exposure to TQ and NSE enhanced GSIS and were associated with the ability of TQ and NSE to increase the ATP/ADP ratio. Furthermore, TQ ameliorated the impairment of GSIS following chronic exposure of ?-cells to glucose overload. This protective action was associated with the TQ-dependent normalization of chronic accumulation of malonyl-CoA, elevation of acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC), fatty acid synthase, and fatty acid-binding proteins following chronic glucose overload. Together, these data suggest that TQ modulates the ?-cell redox circuitry and enhances the sensitivity of ?-cell metabolic pathways to glucose and GSIS under normal conditions as well as under hyperglycemia. This action is associated with the ability of TQ to regulate carbohydrate-to-lipid flux via downregulation of ACC and malonyl-CoA.
Project description:Continuous exposure to preservatives such as nitrite salts has deleterious effects on different organs. Meanwhile, Nigella sativa oil can remediate such organ dysfunction. Here, we studied the effect of consumption of thymoquinone (TQ); the main component of Nigella sativa oil on the brain damage induced by sodium nitrite. Forty adult male rats were daily given oral gavage of sodium nitrite (80?mg/kg) with or without thymoquinone (50?mg/kg). Oxidative stress, cytokines of inflammation, fibrotic elements and apoptotic markers in brain tissue were measured. Exposure to sodium nitrite (SN) resulted in increased levels of malondialdehyde, TGF-?, c-reactive protein, NF-?B, TNF-?, IL-1? and caspase-3 associated with reduced levels of glutathione, cytochrome c oxidase, Nrf2 and IL-10. However, exposure of rats' brain tissues to thymoquinone resulted ameliorated all these effects. In conclusion, thymoquinone remediates sodium nitrite-induced brain impairment through several mechanisms including attenuation of oxidative stress, retrieving the reduced concentration of glutathione, blocks elevated levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines, restores cytochrome c oxidase activity, and reducing the apoptosis markers in the brain tissues of rats.
Project description:Thymoquinone is one of the main components present in Nigella sativa seeds and is known to have various biological functions in inflammation, oxidative stress, tumors, aging, and in lowering blood glucose levels. Few studies have focused on its neuroprotective effects and its regulation of small-molecule metabolites during cerebral ischemia reperfusion injury. In this study, transient middle cerebral occlusion (tMCAO) was used to establish the rat model of cerebral ischemia reperfusion injury. We investigated the effects of thymoquinone using matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization mass spectrometry imaging (MALDI-MSI) in a model of ischemia reperfusion injury to explore the changes in small-molecule metabolites in the brain. We found that that thymoquinone significantly improved neurobehavioral scores, reduced the cerebral infarct area, alleviated brain edema, and increased the number of normal neurons following injury. MALDI-MSI revealed that thymoquinone reduced abnormal accumulations of glucose, citric acid, succinate and potassium ions. Thymoquinone also increased the amount of energy-related molecules such as ADP, AMP, GMP, and creatine, antioxidants such as glutathione, ascorbic acid, and taurine, and other metabolism-related molecules such as glutamate, glutamine, aspartate, N-acetyl-L-aspartate, and sodium ions in damaged areas of the brain following cerebral ischemia reperfusion injury. In summary, based on the neuroprotective effect of thymoquinone on cerebral ischemia reperfusion injury, this study revealed the regulation of thymoquinone on energy metabolism and small-molecule substance metabolism.