Pygeum africanum (Tadenan) is a popular phytotherapeutic agent used in the treatment of symptomatic benign prostatic hyperplasia. The active compounds of the drug have not been identified, and determining the plasma concentration of the drug is, therefore, not possible. Because there are conflicting results on the efficacy of this drug, we aimed to investigate its effect on prostate cell growth in vitro using human serum collected before and after Pygeum africanum intake. We used primary and organotypic cultures of human prostatic stromal myofibroblast cell line WPMY and prostatic epithelial cell line PNT2. We also used fresh benign prostatic tissue. The serum of a treated man induced decreases in the proliferation of primary cells, organotypic cells and WPMY cells but not PNT2 cells. We also analysed the effect of treated serum on the gene expression profile of WPMY cells. The transcriptome analysis revealed an upregulation of genes involved in multiple tumour suppression pathways and a downregulation of genes involved in inflammation and oxidative-stress pathways. The oral intake of Pygeum africanum resulted in serum levels of active substances that were sufficient to inhibit the proliferation of cultured myofibroblasts prostatic cells. This inhibition was associated with changes in the transcriptome.
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[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Inflammation plays a key role in the development of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Eicosanoids derived from the COX and 5-lipoxygenase (5-LOX) pathways are elevated in the enlarging prostate. Flavocoxid is a novel flavonoid-based 'dual inhibitor' of the COX and 5-LOX enzymes. This study evaluated the effects of flavocoxid in experimental BPH.
Rats were treated daily with testosterone propionate (3 mg·kg(-1) s.c.) or its vehicle for 14 days to induce BPH. Animals receiving testosterone were randomized to receive vehicle (1 mL·kg(-1) , i.p.) or flavocoxid (20 mg·kg(-1) , i.p.) for 14 days. Histological changes, eicosanoid content and mRNA and protein levels for apoptosis-related proteins and growth factors were assayed in prostate tissue. The effects of flavocoxid were also tested on human prostate carcinoma PC3 cells.
Flavocoxid reduced prostate weight and hyperplasia, blunted inducible expression of COX-2 and 5-LOX as well as the increased production of PGE(2) and leukotriene B(4) (LTB(4) ), enhanced pro-apoptotic Bax and caspase-9 and decreased the anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 mRNA. Flavocoxid also reduced EGF and VEGF expression. In PC3 cells, flavocoxid stimulated apoptosis and inhibited growth factor expression. Flavocoxid-mediated induction of apoptosis was inhibited by the pan-caspase inhibitor, Z-VAD-FMK, in PC3 cells, suggesting an essential role of caspases in flavocoxid-mediated apoptosis during prostatic growth.
Our results show that a 'dual inhibitor' of the COX and 5-LOX enzymes, such as flavocoxid, might represent a rational approach to reduce BPH through modulation of eicosanoid production and a caspase-induced apoptotic mechanism.
Full-text · Article · Apr 2012 · British Journal of Pharmacology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Traditional medicine is very popular in Africa and it is considered as an alternative form of health care. Plants and vegetables used in folk and traditional medicine have gained wide acceptance as one of the main sources of prophylactic and chemopreventive drug discovery and this is due to the evidence of particular biological and biochemical characteristics of each plants extracts. The role of these compounds in urological field may be explained by the anti-inflammatory effect through interference with prostaglandin metabolism, alteration of lipid peroxidation, direct inhibition of prostate growth and moreover through an antiandrogenic or antiestrogenic effect and a decrease of the availability of sex hormone-binding globulin. Since Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia and Prostate Cancer are two of the most diffuse diseases of aging male and considering that standard medical therapy is accompanied with different side effects, the emerging use of African plants may be justified. This review takes a look at some African plants extracts properties and their relative urological application.
No preview · Article · May 2013 · Mini Reviews in Medicinal Chemistry
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of the clinical trial was to evaluate the efficacy and safety of ProstateEZE Max, an orally dosed herbal preparation containing Cucurbita pepo, Epilobium parviflorum, lycopene, Pygeum africanum and Serenoa repens in the management of symptoms of medically diagnosed benign prostate hypertrophy (BPH).
This was a short-term phase II randomized double-blind placebo controlled clinical trial.
The trial was conducted on 57 otherwise healthy males aged 40-80 years that presented with medically diagnosed BPH.
The trial participants were assigned to receive 3 months of treatment (1 capsule per day) with either the herbal preparation (n=32) or a matched placebo capsule (n=25).
The primary outcome measure was the international prostate specific score (IPSS) measured at baseline, 1, 2 and 3 months. The secondary outcomes were the specific questions of the IPSS and day-time and night-time urinary frequency.
There was a significant reduction in IPSS total median score in the active group of 36% as compared to 8% for the placebo group, during the 3-months intervention (p<0.05). The day-time urinary frequency in the active group also showed a significant reduction over the 3-months intervention (7.0-5.9 times per day, a reduction of 15.6% compared to no significant reduction change for the placebo group (6.2-6.3 times per day) (p<0.03). The night-time urinary frequency was also significantly reduced in the active group (2.9-1.8, 39.3% compared to placebo (2.8-2.6 times, 7%) (p<0.004).
The herbal preparation (ProstateEZE Max) was shown to be well tolerated and have a significant positive effect on physical symptoms of BPH when taken over 3 months, a clinically significant outcome in otherwise healthy men.
Full-text · Article · Jun 2013 · Complementary therapies in medicine