Medicinal Plants as a Potential Source of Chemopreventive Agents

  • Arpita Roy
  • Nupur Jauhari
  • Navneeta BharadvajaEmail author


Cancer is one of the most common deadly diseases and remains as one of the leading causes of death worldwide. High mortality and incidence make it an important public health and economic issue which requires an effective prevention. Radiotherapy, immunotherapy, and chemotherapy are the most common methods used for the treatment of cancer, but these techniques adversely affect the healthy cells. Thus, inhibition of damaging behavior to the healthy tissues with the use of commonly used therapies motivates to explore the new safe methods to treat cancer. Chemoprevention is a novel approach to control cancer; it involves utilization of specific natural or synthetic agents to suppress, prevent, or reverse the malignancy before development of invasive cancer. Products from natural sources such as medicinal plants and herbs and their phytocompounds including flavonoids, alkaloids, carotenoids, etc. show protective effects against various forms of cancers. Chemoprevention of cancer using phytocompounds may be one of the feasible approaches to control this disease. An herbal medicine which refers to the medicinal product of plant stem, roots, leaves, bark, seed, flower, and fruit is one of the best sources for extraction of chemopreventive agents as they are nontoxic in nature and cause less or no side effect to the patients. Consumption of chemopreventive agents containing phytocompounds shows an important insight to fight against cancer and yield promising outcomes. The aim of this chapter is to provide an overview of various scientific evidences that support the utilization of medicinal plants and chemopreventive agents for the treatment of cancer.


Cancer Medicinal plants Chemopreventive agents Phytocompounds Clinical study 


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Arpita Roy
    • 1
  • Nupur Jauhari
    • 1
  • Navneeta Bharadvaja
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Plant Biotechnology Laboratory, Department of BiotechnologyDelhi Technological UniversityNew DelhiIndia

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