Hydroxytyrosol, a natural molecule occurring in olive oil, induces cytochrome c-dependent apoptosis.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

2-(3,4-Dihydroxyphenyl)ethanol (DPE), a naturally occurring phenolic antioxidant molecule found in olive oil, has been reported to exert several biological and pharmacological activities. We studied the effect of this compound on the proliferation and survival of HL60 cell line. Concentrations from 50 to 100 microM DPE, comparable to its olive oil content, caused a complete arrest of HL60 cell proliferation and the induction of apoptosis. This was demonstrated by flow cytometric analyses, poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase cleavage, and caspase 3 activation. The apoptotic effect requires the presence of two ortho-hydroxyl groups on the phenyl ring, since tyrosol, 2-(4-hydroxyphenyl)ethanol, did not induce either cell growth arrest or apoptosis. DPE-dependent apoptosis is associated with an early release of cytochrome c from mitochondria which precedes caspase 8 activation, thus ruling out the engagement of cell death receptors in the apoptotic process. 2-(3,4-Dihydroxyphenyl)ethanol induced cell death in quiescent and differentiated HL60 cells, as well as in resting and activated peripheral blood lymphocytes, while did not cause cell death in two colorectal cell lines (HT-29 and CaCo2). These results suggest that DPE down-regulates the immunological response, thus explaining the well-known antinflammatory and chemopreventive effects of olive oil at the intestinal level.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Ragione, FD; Cucciolla, V; Borriello, A; Pietra, VD; Pontoni, G; Racioppi, L; Manna, C; Galletti, P; Zappia, V

Published Date

  • November 30, 2000

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 278 / 3

Start / End Page

  • 733 - 739

PubMed ID

  • 11095977

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0006-291X

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1006/bbrc.2000.3875


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States