Effect of Violacein Extracted from Different Chromobacterium violaceum Strains on Growth of Cancer Cells

Toral Rajesh Mehta, Tennessee State University


Chromobacterium violaceum (CV) produces a violet color pigment known as Violacein. It has been reported that Violacein kills bacteria and induces apoptosis in various types of cancer cells. Based on these reports, it was hypothesized that this compound would serve as a good anticancer agent. The main objective of the work reported here was to determine if the Violacein produced by strains of CV (14N23 and 14N1) isolated from Copper Basin, Tennessee has anti-cancer activity and compare that to CV ATCC 12472. ^ Violacein was extracted from three different CV strains (14N23, 14N1, 12472) and after drying, the crude extract preparation was re-suspended in DMSO at varying concentrations. Breast (BT20), colon (SW620) and cervical (HeLa) cancer cells were exposed to the varying extract concentrations for 24 hours. Growth analysis was determined using a cell viability indicator Alamar Blue and a florescent plate reader. ^ Violacein extracted from 14N23 demonstrated the greatest potential for containing a novel anticancer agent. Though, it proved to be statistically significant at 0.05 µg/ml concentration in BT20 and at 0.05µg/ml and 0.025 µg/ml in SW620, it was not statistically significant in the HeLa cell line when compared with the control. Secondly, violacein extracted from 14N1 and 12472 significantly inhibited cell viability in BT20 breast cancer cell line at 0.05 µg/ml and at 0.05 µg/ml and 0.025µg/ml respectively when compared to the control. Thus, growth of the BT20 breast cancer cell line was affected by violacein extracts from each of the CV strains. It was also noted that for the BT20 breast cancer cell line, the extract from the 12472 strain was more effective as compared with the 14N23 strain which showed inhibition of the growth of each of the cancer cell lines used in this study. ^ It was concluded that violacein extracts from the 14N23 and 12472 CV strains should be studied further to isolate the active anticancer compounds in the extracts and to investigate the mechanism of action of the compounds.^

Subject Area

Biology, Cell|Biology, Microbiology|Health Sciences, Oncology

Recommended Citation

Toral Rajesh Mehta, "Effect of Violacein Extracted from Different Chromobacterium violaceum Strains on Growth of Cancer Cells" (2012). ETD Collection for Tennessee State University. Paper AAI1510440.