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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2012, Article ID 259523, 5 pages
Review Article

Anti-Lung-Cancer Activity and Liposome-Based Delivery Systems of β-Elemene

1State Key Laboratory of Quality Research in Chinese Medicine, Institute of Chinese Medical Sciences, University of Macau, Macau 999078, China
2Beijing DDS-Venturepharm .T. Corp, Beijing 100097, China
3Institute of New Drug Research, Guangdong Province Key Laboratory of Pharmacodynamic, Constituents of Traditional Chinese Medicine & New Drug Research, College of Pharmacy, Jinan University, Guangdong 510632, China
4School of Pharmacy, Cixi Hospital, Wenzhou Medical College, Wenzhou 325035, China

Received 20 August 2012; Revised 29 October 2012; Accepted 2 November 2012

Academic Editor: Yoshiyuki Kimura

Copyright © 2012 Meiwan Chen 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.


In the past decade, β-elemene played an important role in enhancing the effects of many anticancer drugs and was widely used in the treatment of different kinds of malignancies and in reducing the side effects of chemotherapy. Further study showed that it is also a promising anti-lung cancer drug. However, the clinical application of β-elemene was limited by its hydrophobic property, poor stability, and low bioavailability. With the development of new excipients and novel technologies, plenty of novel formulations of β-elemene have improved dramatically, which provide a positive perspective in terms of clinical application for β-elemene. Liposome as a drug delivery system shows great advantages over traditional formulations for β-elemene. In this paper, we summarize the advanced progress being made in anti-lung cancer activity and the new liposomes delivery systems of β-elemene. This advancement is expected to improve the level of pharmacy research and provide a stronger scientific foundation for further study on β-elemene.