Lunasin and lunasin-like peptides inhibit inflammation through suppression of NF-κB pathway in the macrophage

Elvira Gonzalez de Mejia, Vermont P. Dia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Inflammation is part of the host defense mechanism against harmful matters and injury; however, aberrant inflammation is associated to the development of chronic diseases such as cancer. Lunasin is a novel peptide that demonstrates potential anticancer activity against mammalian cancer cell lines and may play a role in inflammation. The objective of this study was to determine the mechanism of action by which lunasin and lunasin-like peptides exert their anti-inflammatory properties using RAW 264.7 macrophage cell line as an in vitro model. We purified three peptides (5, 8, and 14 kDa) from defatted soybean flour with a positive immunoreactivity towards lunasin mouse monoclonal antibody. Treatment with these peptides (10-50 μM) resulted in the inhibition of pro-inflammatory markers in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced RAW 264.7 macrophages. The 5 kDa peptide inhibited most potently pro-inflammatory markers including interleukin-6 production (IC50 = 2 μM), interleukin-1β production (IC50 = 13 μM), nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB) transactivation (IC50 = 21 μM), cyclooxygenase-2 expression (IC50 = 25 μM), nitric oxide production (IC50 = 28 μM), inducible nitric oxide synthase expression (IC50 = 37 μM), prostaglandin E2 production (IC50 = 41 μM), p65 nuclear translocation (IC50 = 48 μM) and p50 nuclear translocation (IC50 = 77 μM). In conclusion, lunasin and lunasin-like peptides purified from defatted soybean flour inhibited inflammation in LPS-induced RAW 264.7 macrophage by suppressing NF-κB pathway.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2388-2398
Number of pages11
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2009


  • Inflammation
  • Lunasin
  • Lunasin-like peptides
  • NF-κB
  • Soybean

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Physiology
  • Endocrinology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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