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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014, Article ID 890141, 10 pages
Review Article

Phytochemicals: A Multitargeted Approach to Gynecologic Cancer Therapy

1Yuhan Research Institute, Yuhan Corporation, Giheung-gu, Yongin-si 416-1, Republic of Korea
2WCU Biomodulation, Department of Agricultural Biotechnology, Seoul National University, Seoul 151-921, Republic of Korea
3Cancer Research Institute, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul 110-799, Republic of Korea
4Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul 110-744, Republic of Korea
5Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON, Canada K1H 8L6
6Department of Cellular & Molecular Medicine, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON, Canada K1H 8L6
7Interdisciplinary School of Health Sciences, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON, Canada K1H 8L6
8Chronic Disease Program, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, General Campus, Critical Care Wing, 3rd Floor, Room W3107, 501 Smyth Road, Ottawa, ON, Canada K1H 8L6

Received 8 January 2014; Accepted 10 June 2014; Published 1 July 2014

Academic Editor: Danny N. Dhanasekaran

Copyright © 2014 Lee Farrand 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.


Gynecologic cancers constitute the fourth most common cancer type in women. Treatment outcomes are dictated by a multitude of factors, including stage at diagnosis, tissue type, and overall health of the patient. Current therapeutic options include surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy, although significant unmet medical needs remain in regard to side effects and long-term survival. The efficacy of chemotherapy is influenced by cellular events such as the overexpression of oncogenes and downregulation of tumor suppressors, which together determine apoptotic responses. Phytochemicals are a broad class of natural compounds derived from plants, a number of which exhibit useful bioactive effects toward these pathways. High-throughput screening methods, rational modification, and developments in regulatory policies will accelerate the development of novel therapeutics based on these compounds, which will likely improve overall survival and quality of life for patients.