To determine the protective effect of aloe-emodin (AE) from high glucose induced toxicity in RIN-5F (pancreatic β-cell) cell and restoration of its function was analyzed. RIN-5F cells have been cultured in high glucose (25 mM glucose) condition, with and without AE treatment. RIN-5F cells cultured in high glucose decreased cell viability and increased ROS levels after 48 hr compared with standard medium (5.5 mM glucose). Glucotoxicity was confirmed by significantly increased ROS production, increased pro-inflammatory (IFN-γ, IL-1β,) & decreased anti-inflammatory (IL-6&IL-10) cytokine levels, increased DNA fragmentation. In addition, we found increased Bax, caspase 3, Fadd, and Fas and significantly reduced Bcl-2 expression after 48 hr. RIN-5F treated with both high glucose and AE (20 μM) decreased ROS generation and prevent RIN-5F cell from glucotoxicity. In addition, AE treated cells cultured in high glucose were transferred to standard medium, normal responsiveness to glucose was restored within 8hr and normal basal insulin release within 24 hr was achieved when compared to high glucose.
Regulation of pancreatic β-cell mass is important for insulin secretion and glucose homeostasis that is involved in a variety of physiological and pathological conditions, such as apoptosis, autoimmunity, glucotoxicity and insulin resistance (Bernard
Increasing evidence suggests that high glucose-induced β-cell toxicity primarily results from oxidative stress (Lee
In the present study, we aimed to evaluate the effect of Aloe-emodin (AE) an anthraquinone (Fig. 1) on prevention of RIN-5F cell from glucotoxicity and restoration of its function. AE was originally isolated from leaves of
Aloe-emodin was originally isolated from leaves of Aloe vera (Hamman, 2008). In the present study, we purchased Aloe-emodin from Sigma Chemical Co., St. Louis, MO, USA. All other chemicals used in this study were of the molecular biology grades and commercially available.
RIN5F and L6 myotubes were obtained from American Type culture collections (ATCC, Manassas, VA 20108 USA). Cell culture materials such as, RPMI-1640 (AG Biochrom, Germany), Fetal bovine serum (FBS) (Hiclone, Germany) and streptomycin (AG Biochrom, Germany. All spectrophotometric measurements were carried out using UV2010 Spectrophotometer (Hitachi, Germany). The cell line was maintained and the experiments were carried out according to the guidelines of CMRC ethical committee of KKUH, Saudi Arabia.
RIN-5F cells derived from rat pancreatic β-cells were obtained from American Type Culture Collection (ATCC) and maintained in RPMI-1640 supplemented with 10% (v/v) FBS, streptomycin (100 μg/ml) and penicillin-G (100 U/ml) under an atmosphere of 5% CO2 and 95% humidified air at 37°C.
Initially, whether aloe-emodin (AE) produce any toxic to RIN-5F cells was analyzed by treating with increasing concentration of AE (such as, 0, 5, 10, 20, 40, 80 and 160 μmol) to RIN-5F cells cultured in standard medium. The cytotoxicity was analyzed after 24 hr and 48 hr incubations, respectively using MTT (3-(4, 5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2, 5-Diphenyltetrazolium Bromide) assay as described by Mosmann (1983); the optical density was measured at 570 nm using 96-well microplate-reader (Bio-Rad, Model 680, Hercules, CA). The percentage of toxicity was calculated, using the formula:
To determine high glucose induced toxicity to RIN-5F pancreatic β-cells, we cultured RIN-5F cells in two different concentration of glucose containing medium such as, standard medium (5.5 mM) and high glucose (25 mM) medium; the cytotoxicity was analyzed after 24 hr and 48 hr incubations, respectively.
The dose of AE (5, 10 and 20 μmol) has been selected based on our cytotoxicity study; to study the protective effect of AE from high glucose induced toxicity in RIN-5F cells. Briefly, RIN-5F cells cultured in high glucose medium was treated with AE and the cytotoxicity was analyzed after 24 hr and 48 hr incubations, respectively. The time and dose dependent cytotoxic effect was compared with respective untreated cells cultured in high glucose and standard (Normal) glucose medium.
The level of intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) in RIN-5F cells cultured in high glucose was measured using 2′, 7′-dichlorofluorescin diacetate (DCFH-DA) (Wang and Joseph, 1999). DCFH-DA passively enters the cell where it reacts with ROS to form the highly fluorescent compound, dichlorofluorescein (DCF). Briefly, 10 mM DCFH-DA stock solution (in methanol) was diluted 500-fold in HBSS without serum or other additives to yield a 20 μM working solution. After 24 hr exposure with AE (5, 10&20 μmol), NAC (5 μmol) and in combination, RIN-5F cells in 24-well plates were washed twice with HBSS and then incubated in 2 ml of 20 μM DCFH-DA at 37°C for 30 min. In a separate experiment, the reference drug N-acetyl cysteine (20 mM) was treated with RIN-5F cells cultured in high glucose and compared with AE treated groups. Fluorescence was then determined at 485-nm excitation and 520-nm emission using a microplate reader.
The nuclear morphology was analyzed with 20 μmol AE treated RIN-5F cells after 48 hr using bright-field microscopy. Control cells were grown in the same manner without AE. The cells were trypsinized and fixed with ethanol. Then, cell nuclei were stained by adding 1 mg/ml propidium iodide (BD Biosciences, USA) at 37°C for 15 min in the dark. Characteristic apoptotic morphological changes were determined by PI staining as described by Leite
Terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP end labeling (TUNEL) assay was performed to visualize DNA damage in cells. 1×104 cells were seeded into the wells of Permanox chamber slides (Thermo Scientific, Rochester, NY, USA). Next day, the media were exchanged for fresh RPMI-1640 medium. The cells were treated with high glucose and 20 μmol of AE for 48 hrs. Respective negative control also maintained without AE treatment. RIN-5F cells were fixed with 4% methanol-free paraformaldehyde in PBS for 10 min at room temperature. After fixation, wells were washed with PBS, permeabilized with a 0.2% Triton X-100 solution for 5 min, and washed twice in phosphate-buffered saline, then 100 μL of equilibration buffer was added at room temperature and incubated for 5?10 min. Samples were washed with PBS and incubated with terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase, recombinant (rTdT) buffer at 37°C for 60 min inside the humidified chamber according to the manufacturer’s protocol (Promega). Reaction was terminated by adding 100 μL of SSC for 15 min. The wells were washed thrice, using PBS for 5 min to remove unincorporated fluorescein-12-dUTP nucleotides. Fragmented DNA was examined under inverted fluorescence microscope (Carl Zeiss). For each sample, the total number of cells and the number of TUNEL-positive cells were quantified in 10 representative fields. The results were presented as a representation from a series of three separate experiments.
The AE and their respective control samples were used to determine the amount of inflammatory mediators, such as IFN-γ, IL-1β, IL-6 and IL-10 in RIN-5F cells cultured in high glucose, using high-sensitivity ELISA-kits method (Quantikine, R&D Systems, Minneapolis, MN, USA). This assay analyzes the soluble and receptor-bound proteins, which gives a measurement of total concentration of inflammatory mediator proteins. The values were expressed as pg/mg protein for IFN-γ, IL-1β, IL-6 and IL-10.
Oxidative stress and apoptosis related genes expression was analyzed with quantitative reverse transcription-PCR (RT-PCR; Applied Biosystems 7500 Fast, Foster City, CA) using a real-time SYBR Green/ROX gene expression assay kit (QIAGEN). cDNA was directly prepared from cultured cells using a Fastlane? Cell cDNA kit (QIAGEN, Germany); and mRNA levels of CYP1A&TNF-α (oxidative stress related genes); apoptotic genes such as, Bax, Bcl-2, FAS, FADD and caspase 3 as well as the reference gene, GAPDH, were analyzed using gene-specific SYBR Green-based QuantiTect? Primer assays (QIAGEN, Germany). qPCR was performed in a reaction volume of 25 μL according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Briefly, 12.5 μL of master mix, 2.5 μL of assay primers (10×) and 10 μL of template cDNA (100 ng) were added to each well. After a brief centrifugation, PCR plate was subjected to 35 cycles under the following conditions: (i) PCR activation at 95°C for 5 minutes, (ii) denaturation at 95°C for 5 seconds and (iii) annealing/extension at 60°C for 10 seconds. All samples and controls were run in triplicate on an ABI 7500 Fast Real-Time PCR system. The quantitative RT-PCR data were analyzed using a comparative threshold (Ct) method, and the fold inductions of samples were compared with the untreated samples. GAPDH was used as an internal reference gene to normalize the expression of specific genes. The Ct cycle was used to determine the expression level in control and AE treated with RIN-5F cells after 48 hrs. The gene expression level was then calculated as previously described by Yuan
RIN-5F cells which were clones derived from rat pancreatic beta cells, were used to evaluate insulin secretion activity. The cells at a concentration of 2.0×105 of the cells/well in 24-well plates were seeded in RPMI-1640 medium. After 24 h incubation, the medium in each well was exchanged 1mL of the fresh medium and the cells were incubated for another 48 hr. The medium in the wells were removed and the cells were washed with the fresh medium (supplemented with 1% FBS) containing normal glucose (5.5 mM) and high glucose (25 mM). Different concentrations of AE (5, 10 & 20 μmol) were treated to the respective wells for 48 hrs, and then the concentration of insulin in the mediums was determined by ELISA system. In addition, after 48 hrs, both high glucose and AE treated cells were transferred to standard medium, normal responsiveness to glucose was measured after 8 hr and normal basal release of insulin was measured after 24 hr, respectively.
The activity was evaluated by an increase of the concentration of insulin-release comparing with the control experiment without test compounds. As a reference control, quercetin (20 μmol) was compared with the insulin secretory effect. Each experiment was done in triplicate and the results are presented as means SD. Group of data was compared using student’s t-test.
All the grouped data were statistically evaluated using SPSS/11.5 software package. The values were analyzed by one way analysis of variance (ANOVA) followed by Tukey’s test. All the results were expressed as mean ± SD with sufficient (six) replicates in each group. For all comparisons, differences were considered statistically significant at
The tested concentrations of Aloe-emodin (0 to 160 μmol) did not produce toxicity to RIN-5F cells cultured in standard medium, also there were no significant decline in the viability of RIN-5F cells cultured in standard medium compared with the control after 24 hr or 48 hr (Fig. 1B).
Fig. 2A shows the results of high glucose induced time dependent cytotoxic effect in RIN-5F cells, were cells cultured in standard (5.5 mM) and high (25 mM) glucose containing media for 24 hr and 48 hr. We found significant reduction of viability in RIN-5F cells cultured in high glucose such as, 13% reduction in 24 hrs (
In Fig. 2B, we have shown the protective effect of AE on high glucose induced toxicity using RIN-5F cells. AE at a dose of 5, 10 and 20 μmol significantly improved cell viability in a dose and time dependent manner. We found, RIN-5F cell cultured in high glucose medium significantly (
RIN-5F cells cultured in high glucose (25 mM) significantly (
Fig. 3B shows the time-course effect of AE on quenching of intracellular peroxide levels in RIN-5F cells. After treatment with AE (20 μmol), we found significant reduction of ROS and cellular stress in RIN-5F cells cultured in high glucose compared with untreated control. The decrease in peroxide amount generated by RIN-5F cells was time and dose dependent, being significant higher (
Cell and nuclear morphology have been evaluated using PI staining and DNA damage was analyzed using TUNNEL assay; and the results have been presented in Fig. 4. PI staining of RIN-5F cells cultured in high glucose medium resulted in significant morphological changes such as, abnormal nuclei, horseshoe-shaped nucleus, specially indicating fragmented nuclei/chromatin when compared to untreated control cells after 48 hr. Staining allows the clear discrimination between unaffected cells, apoptotic and necrotic cells (Fig. 4A). PI staining of RIN-5F cells cultured in high glucose showing 52% of cells with abnormal shape, nuclear condensation, may be cause apoptotic/necrotic stage after 48 hr. After treatment with AE, protect the cells and showing clear cellular and nuclear morphology (Fig. 4A). The increased cells viability may be due to the decreased ROS generation and oxidative stress. The increased cell viability was dose-dependent, being significant in high dose (
In TUNEL assay confirmed the presence of terminal DNA damage in high glucose treated RIN-5F cells (Fig. 4B) compared to normal cells. Increased green florescence intensity indicates the degree of DNA damage induced by high glucose induced oxidative stress. The results confirm RIN-5F cells were undergone oxidative stress induced cell death by apoptosis/necrosis. Also the manual count of PI shows 52% of cells were shown apoptosis, 9% of cells are in necrotic stage (Fig. 4A) and tunnel positive cells shown in Fig. 4B. Our observation clearly showed that high glucose induced ROS production take part in highly organized cellular signaling, signal transduction and apoptosis.
The levels of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines were significantly increased in RIN-5F cells cultured in high glucose, such as IL-1β (2.13 fold), IFN-γ (3.05) was increased and IL-6 (3.15) and IL-10 (2.95) were decreased when compared with untreated control (Fig. 5A). After AE treatment, the altered cytokine such as, IL-1β and IFN-γ levels were decreased, whereas IL-6 and IL-10 levels were significantly increased to two fold.
We analyzed oxidative metabolic stress related genes such as CYP1A and TNF-α in control and AE (20 μmol) treated RIN-5F cells cultured in high glucose medium for 48 hr. The relative quantitation of oxidative stress related genes such as, CYP1A and TNF-α, were shown in Fig. 5B. The expression of CYP1A and TNF-α was down regulated two fold significantly (
In addition Fig. 5B, shows the alterations in Bax, Bcl-2, Fas, Fadd and caspase 3 gene expressions between control and AE treated RIN-5F cells grown in high glucose medium for 48 hr. A marked two fold increased (
Table 1 shows the influence of AE on baseline and GSIS in RIN-5F cells cultured in high glucose medium. Insulin secretion (ng/well) was significantly increased in AE treated RIN-5F cells compared to untreated controls after 48 hr. We observed the
During the progression of type 2 diabetes, glucotoxicity is an important factor that contributes to advancing pancreatic β-cell failure and development of diabetes (Maedler
The generation of ROS in response to the high concentrations of glucose also cause mitochondrial dysfunction and trigger β-cells apoptosis (Hodgin
Mitochondrial dependent apoptotic pathway involves reduction of the mitochondrial potential, leakage of cytochrome C from mitochondria (Ly
Noteworthy that AE treatment to RIN-5F cells produce significantly higher insulin secretion in glucose stimulated conditions, relatively low generation of ROS. The stimulation of insulin secretion by AE depends on the severity of hyperglycemic condition, which was not related to cellular stress or altered mitochondrial dynamics. In our previous study, we have confirmed that nymphayol possibly improve early phase glucose stimulated insulin secretion and restoring cellular insulin sensitivity
In conclusion, Aloe-emodin protects RIN-5F pancreatic β cells from glucotoxicity. Also AE restored the normal responsiveness to glucose and basal insulin secretion in hyperglycemic condition. Aloe-emodin may be a therapeutic agent to overcome β-cell failure that occurs most of the chronic type 2 diabetic patients.
The authors would like to extend their sincere appreciation to the Deanship of Scientific Research, King Saud University for its funding of this research through the Research Group Project No. RG-1435-045.
The authors declare no conflicts of interest.