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Anticancer Agents Med Chem. 2019;19(2):172-183. doi: 10.2174/1871520618666181106115802.

Phytochemicals in Anticancer Drug Development.

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Department of Pharmacy, G.D. Goenka University, Gurgaon-122103, India.
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, M. D. University, Rohtak-124001, India.
Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Pt. B. D. Sharma University of Health Sciences Rohtak- 124001, India.



In spite of major technological advances in conventional therapies, cancer continues to remain the leading cause of mortality worldwide. Phytochemicals are gradually emerging as a rich source of effective but safer agents against many life-threatening diseases.


Various phytochemicals with reported anticancer activity have been simply categorized into major phytoconstituents- alkaloids, polyphenols, saponins, tannins and terpenoids.


The adverse effects associated with currently available anticancer medications may be overcome by using plant-derived compounds either alone or in combination. Exploration of plant kingdom may provide new leads for the accelerated development of new anticancer agents.


Although numerous potent synthetic drugs have been introduced for cancer chemotherapy, yet their serious toxicity concerns to normal cells apart from drug resistance have emerged as the major obstacles for their clinical utility over a prolonged duration of time. Current status and potential of phytochemicals and their derivatives in cancer therapy have been briefly reviewed in the present manuscript.


Anticancer agents; cancer treatment; chemotherapy; oncology research; phytochemicals; secondary metabolites.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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