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Trends Pharmacol Sci. 2008 Oct;29(10):520-7. doi: 10.1016/j.tips.2008.07.004. Epub 2008 Aug 25.

Artemisinins: their growing importance in medicine.

Author information

1
Centre for Infection, Division of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, St. George's, University of London, Cranmer Terrace, London, SW17 0RE, UK. sgjf100@sgul.ac.uk

Abstract

Artemisinins are derived from extracts of sweet wormwood (Artemisia annua) and are well established for the treatment of malaria, including highly drug-resistant strains. Their efficacy also extends to phylogenetically unrelated parasitic infections such as schistosomiasis. More recently, they have also shown potent and broad anticancer properties in cell lines and animal models. In this review, we discuss recent advances in defining the role of artemisinins in medicine, with particular focus on their controversial mechanisms of action. This safe and cheap drug class that saves lives at risk from malaria can also have important potential in oncology.

PMID:
18752857
PMCID:
PMC2758403
DOI:
10.1016/j.tips.2008.07.004
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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