Araveti, Srivastava (2019) Curcumin induced oxidative stress causes autophagy and apoptosis in bovine leucocytes transformed by Theileria annulata Cell death discovery 5() 100


Bovine tropical theileriosis is a tick-borne disease, caused by Theileria annulata which is a protozoan parasite that resides within the B-cells and macrophages. T. annulata is a unique parasite that can transform bovine leucocytes which leads to the cancer hallmarks in the infected cells. Previously, curcumin has been shown to possess multiple pharmacological activities such as anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer activities. In this study, we demonstrated that curcumin inhibits the proliferation of Theileria-transformed bovine leucocytes by promoting apoptosis and autophagy. The transcriptome analysis of curcumin treated cells showed that the genes involved in cell death and autophagy are also differentially regulated. We further elucidated the mechanism of action of curcumin on Theileria infected bovine cells. We found that curcumin induced the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) which activated caspase 8 and destabilized the mitochondrial membrane potential leading to the release of cytochrome c from mitochondria. This subsequently led to the activation of caspase 3 and PARP cleavage, finally leading to apoptosis in the infected cells. Furthermore, curcumin induced the process of autophagy which was characterized by the formation of acidic vesicular organelles, LC3B accumulation with lysosome inhibitor, E64d, and the presence of autophagosomes as visualized by transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Curcumin treatment suppressed the mTOR and increased the expression of autophagy-related proteins. We also found that N- acetylcysteine, an inhibitor of ROS, could rescue the infected cells from curcumin induced apoptosis and autophagy mediated cell death. Intriguingly, curcumin had no effect on uninfected bovine PBMCs. Altogether, these data suggest the therapeutic potential of curcumin against bovine tropical theileriosis.