Systems and in vitro pharmacology profiling of diosgenin against breast cancer
Aim: The purpose of this study was to establish a mode of action for diosgenin against breast cancer employing a range of system biology tools and to corroborate its results with experimental facts. Methodology: The diosgenin-regulated domains implicated in breast cancer were enriched in the Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes database to establish diosgenin-protein(s)-pathway(s) associations. Later, molecular docking and the lead complexes were considered for molecular dynamics simulations, MMPBSA, principal component, and dynamics cross-correlation matrix analysis using GROMACS v2021. Furthermore, survival analysis was carried out for the diosgenin-regulated proteins that were anticipated to be involved in breast cancer. For gene expression analyses, the top three targets with the highest binding affinity for diosgenin and tumor expression were examined. Furthermore, the effect of diosgenin on cell proliferation, cytotoxicity, and the partial Warburg effect was tested to validate the computational findings using functional outputs of the lead targets. Results: The protein-protein interaction had 57 edges, an average node degree of 5.43, and a p -value of 3.83e-14. Furthermore, enrichment analysis showed 36 KEGG pathways, 12 cellular components, 27 molecular functions, and 307 biological processes. In network analysis, three hub proteins were notably modulated: IGF1R , MDM2 , and SRC , diosgenin with the highest binding affinity with IGF1R (binding energy −8.6 kcal/mol). Furthermore, during the 150 ns molecular dynamics (MD) projection run, diosgenin exhibited robust intermolecular interactions and had the least free binding energy with IGF1R (−35.143 kcal/mol) compared to MDM2 (−34.619 kcal/mol), and SRC (-17.944 kcal/mol). Diosgenin exhibited the highest cytotoxicity against MCF7 cell lines (IC 50 12.05 ± 1.33) µg/ml. Furthermore, in H 2 O 2 -induced oxidative stress, the inhibitory constant (IC 50 7.68 ± 0.51) µg/ml of diosgenin was lowest in MCF7 cell lines. However, the reversal of the Warburg effect by diosgenin seemed to be maximum in non-cancer Vero cell lines (EC 50 15.27 ± 0.95) µg/ml compared to the rest. Furthermore, diosgenin inhibited cell proliferation in SKBR3 cell lines more though. Conclusion: The current study demonstrated that diosgenin impacts a series of signaling pathways, involved in the advancement of breast cancer, including FoxO, PI3K-Akt, p53, Ras, and MAPK signaling. Additionally, diosgenin established a persistent diosgenin-protein complex and had a significant binding affinity towards IGF1R , MDM2 , and SRC . It is possible that this slowed down cell growth, countered the Warburg phenomenon, and showed the cytotoxicity towards breast cancer cells.