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Tuesday, 4 February 2014

Herbal Cascara Sagrada (Rhamnus purshiana) and Liver cancer


Cascara sagrada is a species of buckthorn, genus Rhamnus, belonging to the family Rhamnaceae, native to western North America, it's bark has been used in traditional medicine for gastrointestinal support. and it is thought to have a laxative and natural cleansing, etc..
Liver cancer is defined as a condition of out of controlled growth of hepatocellular cells in the liver. Since the organ is a soft tissue with less nerve, most liver cancer patient are diagnosed in the later stage of the cancer. According to the statistic, liver cancer remains the fifth most common malignancy in men and the eighth in women worldwide.
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a common form of primary liver cancer.


The Ingredients
The chemical constituents of Cascara Sagrada include Aloe-emodin, Anthrquinone glycosides (Barbaloin Cascarosides A, B, C and D ChrysaloinFrangul), Chrysophanol, Emodin, Heterodianthrones palmidin A, B, and C, dianthrones, Oxanthrone, Rhein, Tannins, etc.

The health benefits
It is believe that the Gene CXC12 with diverted cellular functions and CXCR4, a protein in the cell surface chemical reactions may involve in the process of development of liver cancer. Down regulation of CXCR4 expression in these reaction may be considered in  prevention and treatment the spread of liver cancer. Emodin, a major chemical constituent found in Cascara Sagrada exerted its anti cancer activities by inhibiting the NF-κB activation (inflammation, immunity, cell proliferation and apoptosis) and suppression of CXCL12-induced the spread and invasion in HCC cell lines. In HepG2 cells, in doses depending manner, emodin increased the protein level of cellular tumor antigen (P53) and decreased the protein level of NF-κB/p65 (mutation of gene causes of cancers) in HepG2 cells, a liver cancer cell line. The search team at  Wuhan University, also found that emodin not only down regulated expression of (a protein in regulating and contributing to programmed cell death or apoptosis, but also inhibited the heterodimerization of Bcl-2 with Bax (pro-apoptotic Bax protein). Through these results, emodin suppression of CXCR4 signaling pathway as well as controlling the process of a multifaceted complex cascade of events in liver progression may be another choices in treating liver cancer. The other chemical constituent, Aloe-emodin, also is found to exert its anti cancer effect on the proliferation of hepatic hepatocellular carcinoma cells as it inhibited
the Huh-7 cells (an inherited disorder) in dose- and time-dependent manners and  anti proliferative effect via induction of DNA damage and apoptosis.


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The Side effects
1. Cascara Sagrada can be liver toxic.
2. It may cause Postal hypertension
Cascara sagrada (CS) has been associated with the development of cholestatic hepatitis, complicated by portal hypertension.
3. Fresh cut, dried bark may cause vomiting and diarrhea.
4. It may allergic effect.
5. Etc.


References
(1) Emodin suppresses migration and invasion through the modulation of CXCR4 expression in an orthotopic model of human hepatocellular carcinoma by Manu KA, Shanmugam MK, Ong TH, Subramaniam A, Siveen KS, Perumal E, Samy RP, Bist P, Lim LH, Kumar AP, Hui KM, Sethi G.(PubMed)
(2) Emodin regulates apoptotic pathway in human liver cancer cells by Yu JQ, Bao W, Lei JC.(PubMed)
(3) Apoptosis by aloe-emodin is mediated through down-regulation of calpain-2 and ubiquitin-protein ligase E3A in human hepatoma Huh-7 cells by Jeon W, Jeon YK, Nam MJ.(PubMed)