: Nowadays, the search for food products that promote consumers' health has gained interest, and dairy by-products, due to their biological quality, could have a prominent position among products with health benefits. However, little is known about their activity on cancer cells. This study aimed to provide evidence about the effect of ovine colostrum and milk whey on K562 cells, a model of the human chronic myeloid leukemia cell line. The exposure of K562 cells to a single administration of sheep by-products at different concentrations for three days and three treatments for three days was carried out. Using a flow cytometric approach, we found that CD235a expression remained stable in the cells exposed to ovine whey (milk and colostrum) at concentrations ranging from 1 ng/mL to 100 μg/mL, after three days from one or three administrations, respectively. A significant reduction in fluorescent cells was observed in the populations exposed to 1 mg/mL of both milk and colostrum at the same time points. In these conditions, the size and granularity of the leukemic cells also changed, with a substantial reduction in the number of actively dividing cells in the S phase of the cell cycle. This phenomenon was highlighted by the Annexin V/PI cytofluorimetric test, which is able to provide quantitative results regarding the population of cells in early or late apoptosis or necrotic cells after exposure to a single dose or three doses of colostrum or sheep whey for three days, respectively. This report showed that both colostrum and milk whey were able to modify the phenotypic profile and cell cycle of the K562 cell line, inducing apoptosis at the highest concentration.
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