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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2015, Article ID 948737, 8 pages
Research Article

Anticancer and Anti-Inflammatory Activities of a Standardized Dichloromethane Extract from Piper umbellatum L. Leaves

1Department of Pharmacology, Anaesthesiology and Therapeutics, Faculty of Dentistry, University of Campinas, Avenida Limeira 901, 13414-903 Piracicaba, SP, Brazil
2Chemical, Biological and Agricultural Pluridisciplinary Research Center (CPQBA), University of Campinas, Rua Alexandre Cazelatto 999, Vila Betel, 13148-218 Paulínia, SP, Brazil
3Department of Organic Chemistry, Institute of Chemistry, University of Campinas, Rua Josué de Castro s/n, Cidade Universitária Zeferino Vaz, Barão Geraldo, 13081-970 Campinas, SP, Brazil
4Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Campinas, Cidade Universitária Zeferino Vaz, 13081-970 Campinas, SP, Brazil

Received 26 November 2014; Accepted 13 January 2015

Academic Editor: Youn C. Kim

Copyright © 2015 Leilane Hespporte Iwamoto 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.


Despite the advances in anticancer drug discovery field, the worldwide cancer incidence is remarkable, highlighting the need for new therapies focusing on both cancer cell and its microenvironment. The tumor microenvironment offers multiple targets for cancer therapy, including inflammation. Nowadays, almost 75% of the anticancer agents used in chemotherapy are derived from natural products, and plants are an important source of new promising therapies. Continuing our research on Piper umbellatum species, here we describe the anticancer (in vitro antiproliferative activity and in vivo Ehrlich solid tumor model) and anti-inflammatory (carrageenan-induced paw edema and peritonitis models) activities of a standardized dichloromethane extract (SDE) from P. umbellatum leaves, containing 23.9% of 4-nerolidylcatechol. SDE showed in vitro and in vivo antiproliferative activity, reducing Ehrlich solid tumor growth by 38.7 and 52.2% when doses of 200 and 400 mg/kg, respectively, were administered daily by oral route. Daily treatments did not produce signals of toxicity. SDE also reduced paw edema and leukocyte migration on carrageenan-induced inflammation models, suggesting that the anticancer activity of SDE from Piper umbellatum leaves could involve antiproliferative and anti-inflammatory effects. These findings highlight P. umbellatum as a source of compounds against cancer and inflammation.