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Med Sci (Basel). 2018 Feb 27;6(1). pii: E19. doi: 10.3390/medsci6010019.

Artemisinin and Its Synthetic Derivatives as a Possible Therapy for Cancer.

Author information

1
Departamento de Microbiología del Centro de Investigación en Ciencias de la Salud (CICSA) Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud, Universidad Anáhuac México Campus Norte. Av. Universidad Anáhuac 46 Col. Lomas Anáhuac Huixquilucan, Estado de México 52786, México. enriquekonstat@gmail.com.
2
Departamento de Microbiología del Centro de Investigación en Ciencias de la Salud (CICSA) Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud, Universidad Anáhuac México Campus Norte. Av. Universidad Anáhuac 46 Col. Lomas Anáhuac Huixquilucan, Estado de México 52786, México. jorgeascarg@gmail.com.
3
Departamento de Microbiología del Centro de Investigación en Ciencias de la Salud (CICSA) Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud, Universidad Anáhuac México Campus Norte. Av. Universidad Anáhuac 46 Col. Lomas Anáhuac Huixquilucan, Estado de México 52786, México. sebastiannl7@hotmail.com.
4
Departamento de Microbiología del Centro de Investigación en Ciencias de la Salud (CICSA) Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud, Universidad Anáhuac México Campus Norte. Av. Universidad Anáhuac 46 Col. Lomas Anáhuac Huixquilucan, Estado de México 52786, México. rosalino.vazquez@anahuac.mx.

Abstract

To assess the possibility of using the antimalarial drug artemisinin and its synthetic derivatives as antineoplastic drugs. A Pubmed and Google Scholar (1983-2018) search was performed using the terms artemisinin, cancer, artesunate and Artemisia annua. Case reports and original research articles, review articles, and clinical trials in both humans and animals were evaluated. Both in vitro and in vivo clinical trials and case reports have shown promising activity of the artemisinin drug derivatives in treating certain types of cancer. However, the reported articles are few, and therefore not statistically significant. The minimal toxicity shown in clinical trials and case reports, along with the selective cytotoxic activity of the compounds, make them possible cancer therapies due to the emerging evidence of the drug's effectiveness.

KEYWORDS:

artemisinin; cancer; malaria

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