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Anti-Cancer Agents in Medicinal Chemistry


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

Mini-Review Article

Systemic and Anticancer Potential of Adaptogenic Constituents Isolated from Traditional Herbs – A Mini-Review

Author(s): Mahaboob Khan Sulaiman* and Jaganathan Lakshmanan

Volume 22, Issue 16, 2022

Published on: 31 May, 2022

Page: [2811 - 2821] Pages: 11

DOI: 10.2174/1871520622666220408091610

Price: $65


Adaptogens were initially recognized as stress-resistance inducing compounds. Recent studies reveal that adaptogens are pleiotropically-acting chemical constituents that can be isolated from traditional herbs. They are gaining increasing attention in cancer chemotherapy. This review summarizes the physiological action of adaptogens isolated from the 9 most widely used traditional herbs implicated in cancer therapy viz., Withania somnifera, Tinospora cordifolia, Rhodiola rosea, Emblica officinalis, Glycyrrhiza glabra, Bacopa monnieri, Asparagus racemosus, Ocimum sanctum, and Panax notoginseng. The studies were identified through a systematic search of major computerized databases such as Pubmed, Embase, Medline, Inflibnet, Google Scholar, and Cochrane Library. Individual names of each herb and biological action were the search terms employed. In this review, we have enlisted the chemical constituents and their mechanism of action in a few organ systems as well as in cancer cells. Studies indicate that the adaptogens isolated from these herbs can be broadly arranged into 2 classes based on their chemical structure. These molecules exert a positive influence on several organ systems such as respiratory, nervous, cardiovascular, immune, and gastrointestinal tracts. It is also clear that adaptogens act as effective chemopreventive agents alone or in combination with chemo drugs in multiple cancers by targeting multiple intracellular target proteins. Therefore, we conclude that adaptogens are versatile ligands capable of eliciting many systemic effects. Their biological functions are complex, varied, and context-dependent in various cancers. This offers great scope for personalized treatment and cancer chemoprevention in the future.

Keywords: Adaptogens, anticancer, anti-inflammatory, immuno-modulators, phytochemicals, plant botanicals.

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