Panax ginseng exhibits inhibitory activity against a variety of cancer types. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Chemoprevention of mammary, cervix and nervous system carcinogenesis in animals using cultured Panax ginseng drugs and preliminary clinical trials in patients with precancerous lesions of the esophagus and endometrium.
J Korean Med Sci. 2001 Dec;16 Suppl:S42-53. PMID: 11748376
The anticarcinogenic effects and mechanisms of the biotechnological drugs of Panax ginseng C.A. Meyer cultivated in Russia, bioginseng, panaxel and panaxel- 5, were studied. Bioginseng was produced from a tissue culture of ginseng root cultured on standard medium, whereas panaxel and panaxel-5 were produced from ginseng tissue root cultures using standard mediums enriched with 2-carboxyethylgermanium sesquioxide and 1-hydroxygermatran-monohydrate respectively. All three ginseng drugs inhibited the development of mammary tumors induced by intramammary injections of N-methyl-N-nitrosourea (MNU) in rats, the development of the brain and spinal cord tumors induced by transplacental administration of N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea (ENU) in rats, and the development of uterine, cervical and vaginal tumors induced by intravaginal applications of 7,12-dimethylbenz(a)anthracene (DMBA) in mice. The ginseng drugs induced the cytotoxic activity of macrophages in mice, enhanced T-lymphocyte rosette formation in guinea pigs exposed to cyclophosphamide, and stimulated the production of thyroid hormones in rats. These mechanisms may contribute to the anticarcinogenic action of the ginseng drugs. The organic germanium compounds present in panaxel and panaxel-5 did not potentiate the anticarcinogenic or immuno- stimulatory effects as much as biogeinseng. Preliminary clinical trials with panaxel and bioginseng were carried out in patients with precancerous lesions of the esophagus and endometrium. Panaxel was found to have a strong therapeutic effect in patients suffering from chronic erosive esophagitis. Bioginseng induced the regression of adenomatous-cystic hyperplasia of the endometrium in some patients. Thus, we conclude that the drugs of ginseng appear to hold considerable promise for future cancer chemoprevention.