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PLOS ONE  2014 

Soluble Extract from Moringa oleifera Leaves with a New Anticancer Activity

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0095492

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Moringa oleifera has been regarded as a food substance since ancient times and has also been used as a treatment for many diseases. Recently, various therapeutic effects of M. oleifera such as antimicrobial, anticancer, anti-inflammatory, antidiabetic, and antioxidant effects have been investigated; however, most of these studies described only simple biological phenomena and their chemical compositions. Due to the increasing attention on natural products, such as those from plants, and the advantages of oral administration of anticancer drugs, soluble extracts from M. oleifera leaves (MOL) have been prepared and their potential as new anticancer drug candidates has been assessed in this study. Here, the soluble cold Distilled Water extract (4°C; concentration, 300 μg/mL) from MOL greatly induced apoptosis, inhibited tumor cell growth, and lowered the level of internal reactive oxygen species (ROS) in human lung cancer cells as well as other several types of cancer cells, suggesting that the treatment of cancer cells with MOL significantly reduced cancer cell proliferation and invasion. Moreover, over 90% of the genes tested were unexpectedly downregulated more than 2-fold, while just below 1% of the genes were upregulated more than 2-fold in MOL extract-treated cells, when compared with nontreated cells. Since severe dose-dependent rRNA degradation was observed, the abnormal downregulation of numerous genes was considered to be attributable to abnormal RNA formation caused by treatment with MOL extracts. Additionally, the MOL extract showed greater cytotoxicity for tumor cells than for normal cells, strongly suggesting that it could potentially be an ideal anticancer therapeutic candidate specific to cancer cells. These results suggest the potential therapeutic implications of the soluble extract from MOL in the treatment of various types of cancers.


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