Project titleInvestigating the Effect of the Antioxidants Lycopene and ℬ-Carotene on Human Breast Cancer Cells.

Breast cancer is one of the most diagnosed and leading causes of cancer-related deaths for women worldwide. In Qatar specifically, the leading cancer diagnosis for Qatari women is breast cancer, suggesting an urge to study this form of cancer to gain better understanding of how it behaves and how it can be treated. The use of antioxidants by cancer patients as an alternative to cancer therapy has been on the rise over the last few decades. However, there is some controversy in the research field, specifically breast carcinogenesis, on the efficiency of antioxidants in treating cancer. Therefore, this project aims to investigate the therapeutic effects of 2 natural antioxidants, lycopene and -Carotene, on human breast cancer cells, including proliferation, apoptosis, and migration. Proliferation rates will be studied using flow cytometry, in addition to viability assays. Moreover, apoptosis will be assessed using TUNEL labeling kits as well as evaluation of levels of cleaved caspase 3. The effects of the antioxidants on the migratory behavior of breast cancer cells will be evaluated using the Boyden chamber assay. In addition to the standard 2-dimentional cultures, the effects of these 2 antioxidants will be evaluated in 3D cultures containing breast tumor cells alone or in combination with stromal cells such as fibroblasts. The histology of the resultant spheroids will be evaluated using H and E staining. We hypothesize that following incubation with each antioxidant, less proliferation and increased levels of apoptosis will be observed in breast cancer cells. Finally, migratory properties of breast cancer cells are expected to be reduced when incubated with the antioxidants. All effects are expected to be dose and time dependent. 

Primary contact nameAlReem AlKhanji
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Primary contact mobile phone+97433881157
Students/participant(s) programs
  • Biological Sciences
Faculty advisor(s)
Advisor name Email Affiliation
Dr. Nesrine Affara Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar
For CMU-Q advisor(s), please select their program(s)
  • Biological Sciences