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Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 874276, 7 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/874276
Review Article

Rhus verniciflua Stokes against Advanced Cancer: A Perspective from the Korean Integrative Cancer Center

1Integrative Cancer Center, East-West Neo Medical Center, Kyung Hee University, 149 Sangil-Dong, Gangdong-Ku Seoul 134-727, Republic of Korea
2Graduate School of East-West Medical Science, Kyung Hee University, Yongin 449-701, Republic of Korea
3Department of Hematology and Oncology, East-West Neo Medical Center, Kyung Hee University, Seoul 134-727, Republic of Korea

Received 29 July 2011; Revised 8 September 2011; Accepted 8 September 2011

Academic Editor: Masa-Aki Shibata

Copyright © 2012 Woncheol Choi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Active anticancer molecules have been searched from natural products; many drugs were developed from either natural products or their derivatives following the conventional pharmaceutical paradigm of drug discovery. However, the advances in the knowledge of cancer biology have led to personalized medicine using molecular-targeted agents which create new paradigm. Clinical benefit is dependent on individual biomarker and overall survival is prolonged through cytostatic rather than cytotoxic effects to cancer cell. Therefore, a different approach is needed from the single lead compound screening model based on cytotoxicity. In our experience, the Rhus verniciflua stoke (RVS) extract traditionally used for cancer treatment is beneficial to some advanced cancer patients though it is herbal extract not single compound, and low cytotoxic in vitro. The standardized RVS extract's action mechanisms as well as clinical outcomes are reviewed here. We hope that these preliminary results would stimulate different investigation in natural products from conventional chemicals.