Turkish Journal of Medical Sciences




Background/aim: The aim of the present study was to examine the anticancer effects of combination treatment with artemisinin and iron on the human gastric cancer cell line. Materials and methods: The AGS cell line was cultivated separately as a monolayer in culture flasks and different doses of 99% pure artemisinin with invariable doses of iron sulfate were added to the culture media and adhesive cells on the flask's bottom were stained with hematoxylin-eosin for a pathological assay. Results: Damage to cancerous cells increased dose dependently and it was higher in the combination treatment groups (artemisinin plus iron). The histopathological changes were observed specially in the groups with high artemisinin concentration as cell swelling, nucleus swelling, and formation of small and large vacuolization. Necrotic changes as nucleus pyknosis were seen too. Changes in groups receiving both artemisinin and iron gradually became more severe with dose increase. Conclusion: Pathologic studies showed that the cytotoxic effects of artemisinin were dose dependent and the presence of iron enhanced the artemisinin's anticancer potency.


Artemisinin, iron, AGS cell line, gastric cancer, apoptosis

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