Turkish Journal of Biology




Cynarin (CYN) is the main derivative of caffeoylquinic acid, found in leaves and heads of artichoke. It may have hepatoprotective, antiatherosclerotic, antioxidative, choleretic, and cholesterol-lowering effects. We tested the effects of various doses of CYN on the proliferative potential, survival, morphology, and stress response (SR) markers heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) and heat shock protein-70 (HSP70) in normal human skin fibroblasts (FSF-1), telomerase-immortalized mesenchymal stem cells (hTERT-MSC), and cervical cancer cells (HeLa). The effects of CYN on cell proliferation and morphology were dose- and cell type-dependent, with 500 µM CYN as the upper limit for all cell types. While the growth and proliferation of cells decreased after exposure to 75 µM CYN for 3 days, overall survival of FSF-1 and hTERT-MSC was higher than that of HeLa cells. Furthermore, CYN induced the oxidative SR marker HO-1 in both fibroblasts and stem cells in a biphasic manner. A slight induction of HSP70 was observed only in the stem cells. Thus, CYN may be useful for protection against the growth and survival of potentially cancerous cells and may promote longevity of normal cells by inducing SR proteins. Further advanced research related to CYN and artichoke is recommended.


Cynarin, artichoke, skin fibroblasts, bone marrow, mesenchymal stem cells, HeLa, stress response

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