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Revista Brasileira de Farmacognosia
Print version ISSN 0102-695X
JAAFARI, Abdeslam et al. Comparative study of the antitumor effect of natural monoterpenes: relationship to cell cycle analysis. Rev. bras. farmacogn. [online]. 2012, vol.22, n.3, pp.534-540. Epub Jan 31, 2012. ISSN 0102-695X. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0102-695X2012005000021.
Monoterpenes have been identified as responsible of important therapeutic effects of plant-extracts. In this work, we try to compare the cytotoxic effect of six monoterpenes (carvacrol, thymol, carveol, carvone, eugenol and isopulegol) as well as their molecular mechanisms. The in vitro antitumor activity of the tested products, evaluated against five tumor cell lines, show that the carvacrol is the most cytotoxic monoterpene. The investigation of an eventual synergistic effect of the six natural monoterpenes with two anticancer drugs revealed that there is a significant synergy between them (p<5%). On the other hand, the effect of the tested products on cell cycle progression was examined by flow cytometry after DNA staining in order to investigate the molecular mechanism of their cytotoxic activity. The results revealed that carvacrol and carveol stopped the cell cycle progression in S phase; however, thymol and isopulegol stopped it in G0/G1 phase. Regarding carvone and eugenol, no effect on cell cycle was observed.
Keywords : Antitumor activity; carvacrol; cell cycle; monoterpenes; synergy.