The study was designed to examine whether the hydrophilic statin - pravastatin and the hydrophobic statin - simvastatin affect colon cancer cell-induced cytokine secretion by peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC). Statins were added to human colon cancer cells (HT-29 and RKO), or to PBMC incubated separately or jointly. The secretion of the pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-1β and IFNγ and that of the anti-inflammatory cytokines IL-1ra and IL-10 induced by cancer cells was decreased by simvastatin but not by pravastatin, whereas that of IL-6 was not affected by both drugs. Conditioned media from colon cancer cells incubated with either simvastatin or pravastatin induced stimulation of cytokine production by PBMC similar to that caused by conditioned media derived from cancer cells incubated without the drugs, suggesting that simvastatin acts directly on the interaction between cancer and PBM cells. Simvastatin, but not pravastatin, caused inhibition of both cancer cell proliferation. The results imply that simvastatin may affect inflammation-induced colon cancer proliferation via alteration of the equilibrium between pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines.
- Colon cancer
- Immune cells