Int J Med Sci 2012; 9(10):838-842. doi:10.7150/ijms.5094 This issue

Short Research Communication

Inhibitory Effects of Anthocyanins on Secretion of Helicobacter pylori CagA and VacA Toxins

Sa-Hyun Kim1,2*, Min Park1*, Hyunjun Woo1, Nagendran Tharmalingam1, Gyusang Lee1, Ki-Jong Rhee1, Yong Bin Eom3, Sang Ik Han4, Woo Duck Seo4 ✉, Jong Bae Kim1✉

1. Department of Biomedical Laboratory Science, College of Health Science, Yonsei University, Wonju 220-710, Republic of Korea
2. Department of Clinical Laboratory Science, Semyung University, Jaecheon 390-711, Republic of Korea
3. Department of Biomedical Laboratory Science, Korea Nazarene University, Chenoan 331-718, Republic of Korea
4. Department of Functional Crops, National Institute of Crop Science, Rural Development Administration, Miryang 627-803, Republic of Korea
* These investigators contributed equally to this study.

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Kim SH, Park M, Woo H, Tharmalingam N, Lee G, Rhee KJ, Eom YB, Han SI, Seo WD, Kim JB. Inhibitory Effects of Anthocyanins on Secretion of Helicobacter pylori CagA and VacA Toxins. Int J Med Sci 2012; 9(10):838-842. doi:10.7150/ijms.5094. Available from

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Anthocyanins have been studied as potential antimicrobial agents against Helicobacter pylori. We investigated whether the biosynthesis and secretion of cytotoxin-associated protein A (CagA) and vacuolating cytotoxin A (VacA) could be suppressed by anthocyanin treatment in vitro. H. pylori reference strain 60190 (CagA+/VacA+) was used in this study to investigate the inhibitory effects of anthocyanins; cyanidin 3-O-glucoside (C3G), peonidin 3-O-glucoside (Peo3G), pelargonidin 3-O-glucoside (Pel3G), and malvidin 3-O-glucoside (M3G) on expression and secretion of H. pylori toxins. Anthocyanins were added to bacterial cultures and Western blotting was used to determine secretion of CagA and VacA. Among them, we found that C3G inhibited secretion of CagA and VacA resulting in intracellular accumulation of CagA and VacA. C3G had no effect on cagA and vacA expression but suppressed secA transcription. As SecA is involved in translocation of bacterial proteins, the down-regulation of secA expression by C3G offers a mechanistic explanation for the inhibition of toxin secretion. To our knowledge, this is the first report suggesting that C3G inhibits secretion of the H. pylori toxins CagA and VacA via suppression of secA transcription.

Keywords: Helicobacter pylori, CagA, VacA, SecA, anthocyanin, cyanidin 3-O-glucoside.