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Essential oils from four Lippia alba chemotypes found to have cytotoxic effects on liver and lung cancer cell lines

In this study, researchers from The Biochemistry Research Institute of La Plata “Professor Doctor Rodolfo R. Brenner” in Argentina evaluated the cytotoxicity of Lippia alba essential oil chemotypes on human cancer cells. The results of their study were published in the Journal of Essential Oil Research.

  • Essential oils (EOs) derived from aromatic plants contain compounds that can be used against diseases like cancer. These compounds attract research because of their widespread use, good bioavailability, low toxicity, and affordable cost.
  • EOs from the plant L. alba have different chemotypes — intraspecific chemical differences in composition. The chemical diversity of their volatile secondary metabolites are particularly of note.
  • As part of their study, the researchers also investigated the mechanisms involved in tagetenone (TA) chemotype cytotoxicity. They used HepG2 and A549 cells for their in vitro experiments.
  • They reported that the L. alba chemotypes exhibited selective cytotoxicity against human cancer cells and induced cell cycle arrest and apoptosis.
  • On the other hand, treatment with the ta chemotype caused a decrease in 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme A reductase and inhibited the formation of cholesterol.
  • The researchers also observed farnesyl pyrophosphate redirection towards other end products, such as ubiquinone.

Based on these results, the researchers concluded that the TA chemotype could provide significant health benefits as a chemopreventive and/or chemotherapeutic agent.

Journal Reference:

Montero-Villegas S, Crespo R, Rodenak-Kladniew B, Castro MA, Galle M, Ciccio JF, Bravo MGD, Polo M. CYTOTOXIC EFFECTS OF ESSENTIAL OILS FROM FOUR LIPPIA ALBA CHEMOTYPES IN HUMAN LIVER AND LUNG CANCER CELL LINES. Journal of Essential Oil Research. 01 February 2018;30(3):167–181. DOI: 10.1080/10412905.2018.1431966

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