Here, we aim to evaluate the chemopreventive efficacy of kava root extracts (KRE) in transgenic adenocarcinoma of the mouse prostate (TRAMP) mice and investigate potential molecular targets of kavalactones, the main components of kava.
TRAMP mice were administrated with KRE formulated food for different periods of time, and then the incidences of high-grade prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia (HG-PIN) and adenocarcinomas and tumor burdens were compared between vehicle control and KRE food fed groups. In addition, the inhibitory effect of the KRE and kavalactones on monoamine oxidase A (MAO-A) and lysine-specific demethylase 1 (LSD1) enzyme activities were examined by commercially available inhibitor screening kits. Histone H3 lysine 9 dimethylation was also evaluated in prostate cancer cells and tumor tissues using Western blotting analysis.
Dietary feeding of 0.3% and 0.6% KRE to TRAMP mice from ages of 6 weeks to 12 weeks inhibited HG-PIN by 43.5% and 59.7%, respectively, and prostate adenocarcinoma by 53.5% and 66.4%, respectively. In addition, 0.6% KRE fed TRAMP mice from ages of 6 weeks to 24 weeks exhibited a significant reduction of genitourinary weight (a surrogate of tumor burden) by 54.5% and reduced body weight gain. Furthermore, the KRE and kavalactones showed a significant inhibition of LSD1 and MAO-A enzyme activities.