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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 536508, 10 pages
Review Article

Emerging Anticancer Potentials of Goniothalamin and Its Molecular Mechanisms

1Faculty of Pharmacy, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM), Jalan Raja Muda Abdul Aziz, 50300 Kualalumpur, Malaysia
2School of Life Sciences, B.S. Abdur Rahman University, Seethakathi Estate, Vandalur, Chennai 600048, India

Received 13 June 2014; Revised 23 July 2014; Accepted 25 July 2014; Published 28 August 2014

Academic Editor: Gautam Sethi

Copyright © 2014 Mohamed Ali Seyed 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.


The treatment of most cancers is still inadequate, despite tremendous steady progress in drug discovery and effective prevention. Nature is an attractive source of new therapeutics. Several medicinal plants and their biomarkers have been widely used for the treatment of cancer with less known scientific basis of their functioning. Although a wide array of plant derived active metabolites play a role in the prevention and treatment of cancer, more extensive scientific evaluation of their mechanisms is still required. Styryl-lactones are a group of secondary metabolites ubiquitous in the genus Goniothalamus that have demonstrated to possess antiproliferative activity against cancer cells. A large body of evidence suggests that this activity is associated with the induction of apoptosis in target cells. In an effort to promote further research on the genus Goniothalamus, this review offers a broad analysis of the current knowledge on Goniothalamin (GTN) or 5, 6, dihydro-6-styryl-2-pyronone (C13H12O2), a natural occurring styryl-lactone. Therefore, it includes (i) the source of GTN and other metabolites; (ii) isolation, purification, and (iii) the molecular mechanisms of actions of GTN, especially the anticancer properties, and summarizes the role of GTN which is crucial for drug design, development, and application in future for well-being of humans.