Article

Anticancer potential of Himalayan plants

Phytochemistry Reviews (Impact Factor: 4.15). 01/2011; 10(3):309-323. DOI: 10.1007/s11101-010-9202-0

ABSTRACT Plants used in traditional medicine have stood up to the test of time and contributed many novel compounds for preventive
and curative medicine to modern science. India is sitting on a gold mine of well recorded and traditionally well practiced
knowledge of herbal medicine. Specially, plants growing at high altitude in Himalayan pastures are time-honored sources of
health and general well being of local inhabitants. As of today, Himalayan plants are a major contributor to the herbal pharmaceutical
industry both of India and other countries. Plants growing at higher altitudes are subjected to an assault of diverse testing
situations including higher doses of mutagenic UV-radiation, physiological drought, desiccation and strong winds. Plants interact
with stressful environments by physiological adaptation and altering the biochemical profile of plant tissues and producing
a spectrum of secondary metabolites. Secondary metabolites are of special interest to scientists because of their unique pharmacophores
and medicinal properties. Secondary metabolites like polyphenols, terpenes and alkaloids have been reported to possess antimutagenic
and anticancer properties in many studies. The fundamental aspiration of the current review is to divulge the antimutagenic/anticancer
potential of five alpine plants used as food or medicine by the populations living at high altitudes.

Keywords
Arnebia euchroma

Hippophae rhamnoides

Hypericum perforatum

Podophyllum hexandrum

Rheum emodi

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