The phytochemical 3,3'-diindolylmethane decreases expression of AR-controlled DNA damage repair genes through repressive chromatin modifications and is associated with DNA damage in prostate cancer cells. Academic Article uri icon


  • Androgen receptor (AR) is a transcription factor involved in normal prostate physiology and prostate cancer (PCa) development. 3,3'-Diindolylmethane (DIM) is a promising phytochemical agent against PCa that affects AR activity and epigenetic regulators in PCa cells. However, whether DIM suppresses PCa via epigenetic regulation of AR target genes is unknown. We assessed epigenetic regulation of AR target genes in LNCaP PCa cells and showed that DIM treatment led to epigenetic suppression of AR target genes involved in DNA repair (PARP1, MRE11, DNA-PK). Decreased expression of these genes was accompanied by an increase in repressive chromatin marks, loss of AR occupancy and EZH2 recruitment to their regulatory regions. Decreased DNA repair gene expression was associated with an increase in DNA damage (H2Ax) and up-regulation of genomic repeat elements LINE1 and -satellite. Our results suggest that DIM suppresses AR-dependent gene transcription through epigenetic modulation, leading to DNA damage and genome instability in PCa cells.

published proceedings

  • J Nutr Biochem

altmetric score

  • 0.25

author list (cited authors)

  • Palomera-Sanchez, Z., Watson, G. W., Wong, C. P., Beaver, L. M., Williams, D. E., Dashwood, R. H., & Ho, E.

citation count

  • 13

complete list of authors

  • Palomera-Sanchez, Zoraya||Watson, Gregory W||Wong, Carmen P||Beaver, Laura M||Williams, David E||Dashwood, Roderick H||Ho, Emily

publication date

  • January 2017