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BioMed Research International
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 379850, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/379850
Review Article

Pinocembrin: A Novel Natural Compound with Versatile Pharmacological and Biological Activities

1The Key Laboratory of Molecular Epigenetics of MOE, Institute of Genetics and Cytology, Northeast Normal University, Changchun 130024, China
2Dental Hospital, Jilin University, Changchun 130041, China
3Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan 60800, Pakistan

Received 29 April 2013; Revised 1 July 2013; Accepted 9 July 2013

Academic Editor: Isabel C. F. R. Ferreira

Copyright © 2013 Azhar Rasul 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

Pinocembrin (5,7-dihydroxyflavanone) is one of the primary flavonoids isolated from the variety of plants, mainly from Pinus heartwood, Eucalyptus, Populus, Euphorbia, and Sparattosperma leucanthum, in the diverse flora and purified by various chromatographic techniques. Pinocembrin is a major flavonoid molecule incorporated as multifunctional in the pharmaceutical industry. Its vast range of pharmacological activities has been well researched including antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anticancer activities. In addition, pinocembrin can be used as neuroprotective against cerebral ischemic injury with a wide therapeutic time window, which may be attributed to its antiexcitotoxic effects. Pinocembrin exhibits pharmacological effects on almost all systems, and our aim is to review the pharmacological and therapeutic applications of pinocembrin with specific emphasis on mechanisms of actions. The design of new drugs based on the pharmacological effects of pinocembrin could be beneficial. This review suggests that pinocembrin is a potentially promising pharmacological candidate, but additional studies and clinical trials are required to determine its specific intracellular sites of action and derivative targets in order to fully understand the mechanism of its anti-inflammatory, anticancer, and apoptotic effects to further validate its medical applications.