Copyright ©2011 Baishideng Publishing Group Co., Limited. All rights reserved.
World J Hepatol. Jul 27, 2011; 3(7): 175-183
Published online Jul 27, 2011. doi: 10.4254/wjh.v3.i7.175
A survey on herbal management of hepatocellular carcinoma
Nabil Mohie Abdel-Hamid, Maiiada Hasan Nazmy, Ahmed Wahid Mahmoud, Michael Atef Fawzy, Marco Youssof
Nabil Mohie Abdel-Hamid, Maiiada Hasan Nazmy, Ahmed Wahid Mahmoud, Michael Atef Fawzy, Marco Youssof, Biochemistry Department, Unit of Liver cancer research, Faulty of Pharmacy, Minia University, Minia 002086, Egypt
Author contributions: Abdel-Hamid NM designed and revised the article; Nazmy MH collected the whole references; Mahmoud AW cited the active constituents; and Fawzy MA and Youssof Mwere responsible for references management and editing.
Correspondence to: Nabil Mohie Abdel-Hamid, PhD, Professor, Diagnostic Laboratory, Abtal El-Faluga Street, Mit-Gomre, Dakahlia 002050, Egypt. nabilmohie@yahoo.com
Telephone: +20-50-6913997 Fax: +20-86-2369075
Received: January 5, 2011
Revised: May 6, 2011
Accepted: May 13, 2011
Published online: July 27, 2011

In this review we outline the different mechanisms mediating hepatocarcinogenesis. We also discuss possible targets of bioactive herbal agents at different stages of hepatocarcinogenesis and highlight their role at each individual stage. We gathered information on the most common herbal prescriptions and extracts thought to be useful in prevention or sensitization for chemotherapy in management of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). The value of this topic may seem questionable compared to the promise offered for HCC management by chemotherapy and radiation. However, we would recommend the use of herbal preparations not as alternatives to common chemo /and or radiotherapy, but rather for prevention among at-risk individuals, given that drug/herb interactions are still in need of extensive clarification. The bioactive constituents of various herbs seem to be promising targets for isolation, cancer activity screening and clinical evaluation. Finally, herbal preparations may offer a cost effective protective alternative to individuals known to have a high risk for HCC and possibly other cancers, through maintaining cell integrity, reversing oxidative stress and modulating different molecular pathways in preventing carcinogenesis.

Keywords: Active ingredients, Chemoprevention, Chemosensitization, Hepatocellular carcinoma, Herbs, Molecular targets