Investigation into the Effects of Phytochemicals from Dandelion Plants on Melanoma Cells
Danielle Xu, Michael Shao
Sir Winston Churchill
Floor Location : S 198 H

This experiment seeks to determine the inhibitory effects of dandelion plants on melanoma cancer through investigating the effects of phytochemicals specific to dandelion plants on cell lines B16- 10 (mouse) and A375 (human). rn rnCancer is a set of diseases that are characterized by uncontrolled rapid cell division resulting in formation of a primary tumour. Often cells from the primary tumour metastasize to other regions of the body, and it is this metastasis which is responsible for 90% of human cancer deaths. . Melanoma is a cancer of melanocytes, the cells that produce melanin, which are generally found underneath the skin, but may also be found in other places in the body. Melanoma is generally far more deadly than other types of skin cancer leading to nearly 50,000 deaths a year.rnrnThis experiment seeks to provide further insight on the effects of phytochemical antioxidants on melanoma cells through the use of biotechnology and possibly discover a chemical that can inhibit the progression of cancer or even kill cancer cells without causing harm to healthy, normal cells.rnrnAs the experiment is still in progress we can only supply an outline of our intended project. Currently we have prepared two cell line cultures (B16 and A375) in differing dilutions (cells/mL). Our next step is to expose the cultures to dandelion phytochemical extracts as well as a positive control for growth inhibition (a chemotherapy drug- doxorubicin) in varying concentrations. As well, we will include a non-tumourogenic cell line (NIH-3T3 mouse fibroblast) for further variable control.rnrnBy comparing the growth increase of cancerous cells in the control cell culture with the growth increase of cancerous cells in the cultures exposed to various phytochemicals, we can deduce whether or not the polyphenol antioxidants in question inhibit cancer progression. The best way to measure such a difference is to perform an assay (AlamarBlue) and compare and contrast the results against the positive control cell culture. If a phytochemical exposed to a cell culture provides similar results relative to the positive control then it can be assumed that the phytochemical is a cell growth inhibitor. To ensure that the phytochemical does not kill noncancerous cells an assay will also be done on the NIH-3T3 cell line. rn