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Anti-Cancer Agents in Medicinal Chemistry


ISSN (Print): 1871-5206
ISSN (Online): 1875-5992

Review Article

Anti-Cancer Effects of Asiatic Acid, a Triterpene from Centilla asiatica L: A Review

Author(s): Muhammad T. Islam*, Eunus S. Ali, Shaikh J. Uddin, Ishaq N. Khan, Manik C. Shill, João M. de Castro e Sousa, Marcus V.O. Barros de Alencar, Ana A.C. Melo-Cavalcante and Mohammad S. Mubarak*

Volume 20, Issue 5, 2020

Page: [536 - 547] Pages: 12

DOI: 10.2174/1871520619666191211103006

Price: $65


Background: Centilla asiatica L is a medicinal herb that has been widely used in folk medicine to treat various diseases. Asiatic Acid (AA), a triterpene and a known component of this herb, has been shown to display important biological activities, including anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antidiabetic and antihyperlipidemic, neuroprotective, anxiolytic and antidepressant, hepatoprotective, pancreas protective, and cardio- protective.

Objective: This review focuses on AA’s anti-cancer effects on the basis of published literature found in a number of databases such as PubMed and Science Direct. Emphasis has been given to the mechanisms of action of its anti-cancer effect.

Methods: A literature survey was conducted using known databases such as PubMed and Science Direct using the keywords ‘Asiatic acid’, pairing with ‘cancer’, ‘tumor’, ‘anti-cancer effect’, ‘cytotoxic effect’, ‘anti-tumor activity’, ‘cell line’, ‘animal cancer’, and ‘human cancer’.

Results: Findings suggest that AA exerts anti-cancer effects in several test systems through various pathways, including oxidative/antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, cytotoxicity, apoptotic cell death, necrosis, anti-angiogenesis, inhibition of proliferation and cell migration, and chemoprevention.

Conclusion: AA may be an effective plant-based cancer chemotherapeutic agent and a promising lead for the development of potent anticancer drugs.

Keywords: Asiatic acid, Centilla asiatica, cancer, mechanisms of action, chemotherapeutic agent, anticancer drugs.

Graphical Abstract
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