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In vitro Screening of Berberis lycium Root Extract on HCT-116 and MCF-7 Cell Lines

Author(s): Xiaolin Hu, S. Islam1, Fuad Ameen2, Abdullah A. Alarfaj2, G. Murtaza3* and A. Mannan1*
Department of general surgery (hepatobiliary, gastrointestinal), The People’s Hospital of Shouguang, Shouguang City, Shandong Province, 262700, China, 1Department of Pharmacy, COMSATS University Islamabad, Abbottabad Campus, Abbottabad 22060, Pakistan, 2Department of Botany & Microbiology, College of Science, King Saud, University, Riyadh 11451, Saudi Arabia, 3Department of Pharmacy, COMSATS University Islamabad, Lahore Campus, Lahore 54000, Pakistan

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Department of Pharmacy, COMSATS University Islamabad, Lahore Campus, Lahore 54000, Pakistan, E-mail:

The objective of the current study was to evaluate the antioxidant, lethality and anticancer potential of root extracts of Berberis lycium. Equal weight of powdered roots was used to prepare water, methanol, ethyl acetate and n-hexane extracts. Methanol extract of Berberis lycium showed promising 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl free radical scavenging potential with an IC50 of 144.31 µg/ml. In the brine shrimp lethality assay, the ethyl acetate extract produced 53.33 % mortality at 1000 µg/ml and its LD50 was 907.7 µg/ml. In the sulforhodamine B colorimetric cytotoxicity screening assay, methanol extracts of Berberis lycium caused 45 % inhibition in growth of HCT116, without producing much effect against MCF7 cell line. In addition, the potential mediators that could be involved in mediating these activities include AKT1, TP53, JUN, and TLR4. In conclusion, methanol extract of Berberis lycium exhibited excellent antioxidant, brine shrimp lethality, and cytotoxic activities, indicating the potential of this plant against colorectal and breast cancer.

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