Apoptosis-Inducing Effects of Amaryllidaceae Alkaloids

Author(s): Jerald J. Nair, Johannes van Staden, Jaume Bastida

Journal Name: Current Medicinal Chemistry

Volume 23 , Issue 2 , 2016

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The Amaryllidaceae occupies a privileged status amongst medicinal plants in having delivered the Alzheimer’s drug galanthamine to the clinical market. Following its resounding success, there have been several positive indicators for the emergence of an anticancer drug from the family due to the potent antiproliferative activities manifested by several of its alkaloid constituents. Of these, the phenanthridones such as pancratistatin hold most promise as potential chemotherapeutics having succumbed to various phases of clinical trials. Other cytotoxic targets of the Amaryllidaceae are to be found within the lycorane and crinane groups, as exemplified by crinine and lycorine. Although the molecular targets of these alkaloids still remain elusive, much effort has gone into understanding their mode of action in cancer cells. Recent findings have shown that the apoptotic pathway may be a key factor in cancer cell death instigated by Amaryllidaceae alkaloids. As such, this review seeks to: (a) examine the apoptotic effects of Amaryllidaceae alkaloids in cancer cells; (b) explore the molecular basis to these effects; and (c) provide a pharmacophoric rationale in support of these activities.

Keywords: Alkaloid, amaryllidaceae, apoptosis, cancer, cytotoxicity, mechanism.

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Article Details

Year: 2016
Published on: 14 January, 2016
Page: [161 - 185]
Pages: 25
DOI: 10.2174/0929867323666151118121124
Price: $65

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