Biomed Res Int. 2019 ;2019:6831520. Epub 2019 Dec 28. PMID: 31950049
Preventive and Therapeutic Roles of Berberine in Gastrointestinal Cancers.
Berberine (BBR) is an isoquinoline alkaloid isolated from various types of plants, including those from the Berberidaceae, Ranunculaceae, and Papaveraceae families. It has long been used in traditional Chinese medicine for treating diarrhea and gastrointestinal disorders. The medicinal properties of BBR include antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antioxidative, lipid-regulatory, and antidiabetic actions. Importantly, the efficacy of BBR against cancers has been assessed in several experimental studies and clinical trials. Gastrointestinal (GI) cancers are a group of the most prevalent cancers worldwide that are associated with high morbidity and mortality, and their associated mortality has been increasing over the years. Thus, GI cancers have become a burden to the patients and health care systems. This review summarizes the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the therapeutic effects of BBR and explores its potential preventive and therapeutic applications against GI cancers.