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Study: African medicinal plants stop tumor growth
Medicinal plants from Africa contain chemical substances that can stop the growth of cancer cells. Researchers from Mainz discovered this in laboratory tests. The plant ingredients are now to be examined further in order to assess the therapeutic benefit. "The identified active ingredients from African medicinal plants are able to kill cancer cells that are resistant to several medications. They offer an excellent basis for developing new methods for the treatment of tumors that can no longer be combated with conventional chemotherapy ", says Univ.-Prof. Dr. Thomas Efferth from the Institute of Pharmacy and Biochemistry at Johannes Gutenberg University (JGU).
Multi-drug resistance is one of the most feared problems in cancer therapy because in such cases most of the cancer drugs established in clinical practice fail.
Many plants contain toxic substances with which they protect themselves against predators and microbial diseases. The art for pharmacologists is to distinguish herbal substances with a healing effect from those that are only toxic and dangerous.
In their most recent publication, the scientists showed that four naturally occurring benzophenones were able to prevent the spread of the cancer cell lines tested, including multidrug-resistant lines. (Kuete V et al. Cytotoxicity and modes of action of four naturally occuring benzophenones: 2,2_, 5,6_-tetrahydroxybenzophenone, guttiferone E, isogarcinol and isoxanthochymol. Phytomedicine, April 2013. DOI: 10.1016 / j.phymed.2013.02.003 )
Image: M. Großmann / pixelio.de (image did not show the medicinal plant)