The role of phytocompounds in cancer treatment: A current review
Mohammed Shafi Sofi and Shabnum Nabi
Plant-derived products are considered excellent sources for the discovery and development of novel cancer chemo-protective and chemotherapeutic agents. Throughout medical history, plant products have been shown to be valuable sources of novel anti-cancer drugs. Several plant-derived compounds are currently successfully employed in cancer treatment, and many natural products have been tested against cancer and still there has been a long standing interest in the identification of medicinal plants and derived natural products for developing novel cancer therapeutics. There are more than 270,000 higher plants existing on this planet. But only a small portion has been explored phytochemically. So, it is anticipated that plants can provide potential bioactive compounds for the development of new ‘leads’ to combat cancer diseases. The activities of phytoconstituents from plant and the synergistic action shown by them with other drugs make them ideal in alternative cancer therapies. It was also known that nature is able to produce a wide variety of chemical entities of novel structure. Many of the new and novel compounds isolated from natural sources might otherwise have never been discovered, especially those of considerable complexity requiring the development of methods for the creation of new ring systems. On the basis of ethnobotanical knowledge, researchers are screening natural bioactive phytoconstituents from plant to identify bioactive compounds for the development of new therapeutic agents for the treatment of cancer this includes studies on secondary metabolites with chemopreventive, antiproliferative and cytotoxic activities. In this review, complete outlines of the natural bioactive anticancer phytoconstituents from plant are described. Further pharmaceutical developmental challenges and opportunities in bringing the phytochemicals into the market are also explored.