Recent Articles on Andrographis sp.

Andrographis and Cancer

Andrographis paniculata protects the liver from toxic substances and has antitumor properties, with important implications for cancer treatment.

  • Andrographis paniculata plant extract is known to possess a variety of pharmacological activities. Andrographolide, the major constituent of the extract is implicated towards its pharmacological activity. We studied the cellular processes and targets modulated by andrographolide treatment in human cancer and immune cells. Andrographolide treatment inhibited the in vitro proliferation of different tumor cell lines, representing various types of cancers. The compound exerts direct anticancer activity on cancer cells by cell-cycle arrest at G0/G1 phase through induction of cell-cycle inhibitory protein p27 and decreased expression of cyclin-dependent kinase 4 (CDK4). Immunostimulatory activity of andrographolide is evidenced by increased proliferation of lymphocytes and production of interleukin-2. Andrographolide also enhanced the tumor necrosis factor-α production and CD marker expression, resulting in increased cytotoxic activity of lymphocytes against cancer cells, which may contribute for its indirect anticancer activity. The in vivo anticancer activity of the compound is further substantiated against B16F0 melanoma syngenic and HT-29 xenograft models. These results suggest that andrographolide is an interesting pharmacophore with anticancer and immunomodulatory activities and hence has the potential for being developed as a cancer therapeutic agent. Journal of Experimental Therapeutics and Oncology Volume 3 Page 147 - May 2003
  • Andrographolide 1, a diterpenoid lactone of the plant Andrographis paniculata, known to possess antitumour activity in in vitro and in vivo breast cancer models was subjected to semisynthesis leading to the preparation of a number of novel compounds. These compounds exhibited in vitro antitumour activity with moderate to excellent growth inhibition against MCF-7 (breast) and HCT-116 (colon) cancer cells. Compounds 3,19-(2-chlorobenzylidene)andrographolide(5), 3,19-(3-chlorobenzylidene)andrographolide(6), 3,19-(3-fluorobenzylidene) andrographolide(7), 3,19-(4-fluorobenzylidene)andrographolide(8), 3,19-(2-fluorobenzylidene)andrographolide(10), 3,19-(2-chloro-5-nitrobenzylidene)andrographolide (21), 3,19-(4-chlorobenzylidene)andrographolide(30) and 3,19-(2-chloro-4-fluorobenzylidene) andrographolide(31) were also screened against 60 NCI (National Cancer Institute, USA) human tumour cell lines derived from nine cancer cell types. J Enzyme Inhib Med Chem. 2006 Apr;21(2):145-55. PMID: 16789428
  • Andrographolide (Andro), a diterpenoid lactone isolated from a traditional herbal medicine Andrographis paniculata, is known to possess potent anti-inflammatory activity. In this study, Andro induced apoptosis in human cancer cells via activation of caspase 8 in the extrinsic death receptor pathway and subsequently with the participation of mitochondria. Andro triggered a caspase 8-dependent Bid cleavage, followed by a series of sequential events including Bax conformational change and mitochondrial translocation, cytochrome c release from mitochondria, and activation of caspase 9 and 3. Inhibition of caspase 8 blocked Bid cleavage and Bax conformational change. Consistently, knockdown of Bid protein using small interfering RNA (siRNA) technique suppressed Andro-induced Bax conformational change and apoptosis. In conclusion, the pro-apoptotic Bcl-2 family members (Bid and Bax) are the key mediators in relaying the cell death signaling initiated by Andro from caspase 8 to mitochondria and then to downstream effector caspases, and eventually leading to apoptotic cell death. Biochem Pharmacol. 2006 Jul 14;72(2):132-44. Epub 2006 Apr 29. PMID: 16740251
  • The in vitro cytotoxicities of the ethanol extract of Andrographis paniculata (APE) and its main diterpenoid components were evaluated in various cancer cells. APE was found to be significantly growth inhibitory to human acute myeloid leukemic HL-60 cells with an IC (50) value of 14.01 microg/mL after 24 h of treatment. Among the three main diterpenoids in A. paniculata, andrographolide exhibited the highest degree of cytotoxicity followed by deoxyandrographolide while neoandrographolide was the least effective. Laser confocal microscopy and gel electrophoresis studies revealed chromosomal DNA fragmentations suggesting the occurrence of apoptosis. An increase of G (0)/G (1) phase cells from 51.88 % to 78.69 % was noted after andrographolide treatment for 36 h. The G (0)/G (1) phase arrest and apoptosis were associated with disappearance of mitochondrial cytochrome c and increased expression of Bax but decreased expression of Bcl-2 proteins in the inhibited cells. Although the order of all these events has not been determined, it is concluded that APE and andrographolide induce cell cycle arrest and affect an intrinsic mitochondria-dependent pathway of apoptosis by regulating the expression of some pro-apoptotic markers in HL-60 cells. Planta Med. 2005 Dec;71(12):1106-11. PMID: 16395645
  • Andrographis paniculata extract is traditionally used as a medicine to treat different diseases in India, China and Southeast Asia. In the present study, we evaluated the anticancer and immunomodulatory activity of the methanolic extract of Andrographis paniculata in human cancer and immune cells. The methanolic extract of Andrographis paniculata was fractionated into dichloromethane, petroleum ether and aqueous extracts and screened for bioactivity. Our results indicate that the dichloromethane fraction of the methanolic extract retains the active compounds contributing for both the anticancer and immunostimulatory activity. Dichloromethane fraction significantly inhibits the proliferation of HT-29 (colon cancer) cells and augments the proliferation human peripheral blood lymphocytes (HPBLs) at low concentrations. On further fractionation of the dichloromethane extract we could isolate three diterpene compounds, i.e. [1] andrographolide, [2] 14-deoxyandrographolide and [3] 14-deoxy-11,12-didehydroandrographolide. Andrographolide showed anticancer activity on diverse cancer cells representing different types of human cancers. Whereas all the three molecules showed enhanced proliferation and interleukin-2 (IL-2) induction in HPBLs. J Ethnopharmacol. 2004 Jun;92(2-3):291-5 PMID: 15138014
  • Natural products may increase cytotoxic activity of Natural Killer Cells (NK) Tumor Necrosis Factor alpha (TNF-alpha) while decreasing DNA damage in patients with late-stage cancer. Pilot studies have suggested that a combination of Nutraceuticals can raise NK cell function and TNF-alpha alpha activity and result in improved clinical outcomes in patients with late stage cancer. The objective of the study is to determine if Nutraceuticals can significantly raise NK function and TNF levels in patients with late stage cancer. After informed consent was obtained, 20 patients with stage IV, end-stage cancer were evaluated (one bladder, five breast, two prostate, one neuroblastoma, two non-small cell lung, three colon, 1 mesothelioma, two lymphoma, one ovarian, one gastric, one osteosarcoma). Transfer Factor Plus (TFP+, 3 tablets 3 times per day), IMUPlus (non denatured milk whey protein, 40 gm/day); Intravenous (50 to 100 gm/day) and oral (1-2 gm/day) ascorbic acid; Agaricus Blazeii Murill teas (10 gm/day); Immune Modulator Mix (a combination of vitamin, minerals, antioxidants and immune-enhancing natural products); nitrogenated soy extract (high levels of genistein and dadzein) and Andrographis Paniculata (500 mg twice, daily) were used. Baseline NK function by standard 4 h 51Cr release assay and TNF alpha and receptor levels were measured by ELISA from resting and phytohemagglutinin (PHA) stimulated adherent and non-adherent Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cell (PBMC). Total mercaptans and glutathione in plasma were taken and compared to levels measured 6 months later. Complete blood counts and chemistry panels were routinely monitored. As of a mean of 6 months, 16/20 patients were still alive. The 16 survivors had significantly higher NK function than baseline (p < .01 for each) and TNF-alpha levels in all four cell populations studied (p < .01 for each). Total mercaptans (p < .01) and TNF-alpha receptor levels were significantly reduced (p < .01). It was also observed that hemoglobin, hematocrit and glutathione levels were significantly elevated. The only toxicity noted was occasional diarrhea and nausea. The quality of life improved for all survivors by SF-36 form evaluation. An aggressive combination of immunoactive Nutraceuticals was effective in significantly increasing NK function, other immune parameters and hemoglobin from PBMC or plasma in patients with late stage cancers. Nutraceutical combinations may be effective in late stage cancers. Clinical outcomes evaluations are ongoing. Immunol Invest. 2002 May;31(2):137-53 PMID: 12148949