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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014, Article ID 686921, 12 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/686921
Review Article

Pomegranate Fruit as a Rich Source of Biologically Active Compounds

Cancer Research Program, Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology, Thycaud P.O, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala 695 014, India

Received 21 November 2013; Revised 25 February 2014; Accepted 25 February 2014; Published 10 April 2014

Academic Editor: Kota V. Ramana

Copyright © 2014 Sreeja Sreekumar 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

Pomegranate is a widely used plant having medicinal properties. In this review, we have mainly focused on the already published data from our laboratory pertaining to the effect of methanol extract of pericarp of pomegranate (PME) and have compared it with other relevant literatures on Punica. Earlier, we had shown its antiproliferative effect using human breast (MCF-7, MDA MB-231), and endometrial (HEC-1A), cervical (SiHa, HeLa), and ovarian (SKOV3) cancer cell lines, and normal breast fibroblasts (MCF-10A) at concentration of 20–320 μg/mL. The expressions of selected estrogen responsive genes (PR, pS2, and C-Myc) were downregulated by PME. Unlike estradiol, PME did not increase the uterine weight and proliferation in bilaterally ovariectomized Swiss-Albino mice models and its cardioprotective effects were comparable to that of 17β-estradiol. We had further assessed the protective role of PME on skeletal system, using MC3T3-E1 cells. The results indicated that PME (80 μg/mL) significantly increased ALP (Alkaline Phosphatase) activity, supporting its suggested role in modulating osteoblastic cell differentiation. The antiosteoporotic potential of PME was also evaluated in ovariectomized (OVX) rodent model. The results from our studies and from various other studies support the fact that pomegranate fruit is indeed a source of biologically active compounds.