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Int J Clin Exp Med. 2011;4(1):17-25. Epub 2010 Dec 3.

Crude drugs as anticancer agents.


Although tremendous progress has been made in basic cancer biology and in the development of novel cancer treatments, cancer remains a leading cause of death in the world. The etiopathogenesis of cancer is complex. Besides genetic predisposition, known environmental factors associated with cancer are: diet, lifestyle, and environmental toxins. Toxicity of drugs and eventual relapse of cancers contribute to high cancer death rates. Current therapeutic interventions for cancer- surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, thermotherapy, etc. are far from being curative for many forms of cancer. Chemotherapy, in particular, though the most commonly used cancer treatment, is usually associated with side effects with varying degrees of severity. The purpose of this brief review is to assemble current literature on some crude drugs and to focus on their beneficial roles and drug targets in cancer therapy and chemo-prevention. Although their pharmacological mechanisms and biochemical roles in cancer biology and tumor chemo-prevention are not fully understood, crude drugs are believed to have nutriceutical effects upon cancer patients.


Crude drug; apoptosis; cancer; cell cycle; inflammation

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