Lycopene Attenuated Nitrosodiethylamine-Induced Hepatocarcinogenesis by Modulating the Metabolic Activation and Detoxification Enzymes

Document Type : Original Article


Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Benha University


Lycopene was shown to exert anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, hepatoprotective properties, and anticancer activity. This study was done to investigate the protective effects of Lycopene on diethylnitrosamine (DEN)- induced hepatocarcinogensis in rats. Forty-five male albino rats were divided into three groups. Group I (normal control group): rats administered distilled water only. Group II: rats received diethylnitrosamine (200 mg/kg b.wt/i.p), two weeks later rats received (2 ml/kg b. wt) Carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) orally at 1:1 dilution in corn oil as a promoter of carcinogenic effect. DEN and CCl4 injections were repeated once again after 1 month from first DEN injection. Group III: rats received DEN+CCl4 as in group II then treated with lycopene at a dose of (20 mg/kg b.wt/orally) dissolved in tween-80%  for 6 weeks. All animals were sacrificed after the end of experiment. DEN induced HCC showed significant increase in hepatic marker enzymes (ALT and ALP), total bilirubin and alpha fetoprotein (AFP) with marked decrease in serum albumin concentration. Also, the results of molecular analysis in liver tissue revealed significant up-regulation in TNF-α gene expression level. Conversely, down-regulation in tumor suppressor gene p53 and Cyp2E1 gene expression compared with control group. Treatment with lycopene to DEN induced HCC protects the liver cells from damage by regulating the biochemical parameters. Lycopene was able to mitigate liver tissue damage induced by DEN through increasing of Cyp2E1 and P53 in addition to decreasing TNF-α gene expression level and ameliorate all serum liver function parameters. These findings suggested, the potential efficacy of lycopene as an additional chemo preventive agent in treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma by modulating the apoptosis, anti-inflammatory and detoxification effects.


Main Subjects