The folk medicine, Annona muricata, is used in many countries as the traditional treatment for cancer. Other names for this herb are graviola and soursop. It grows throughout sub-Saharan Africa, and it has been shown to be anti-hyperglycemic, anti-hyperlipidemic, antimalarial, anti-parasitic, antibacterial, insecticidal, antiviral anti-mollusk, and anticancer. Often, herbs are highly beneficial because they contain various chemicals which have synergistic effects and buffer the toxic effects of other chemicals.
This study was done to evaluate the effects of alcohol extracts and water extracts of A. muricata from Eastern Uganda. The leaves were collected in the wilds of Eastern Uganda. They were dried at room temperature, and ethanol and water extracts were prepared for 3 days. A determination of the chemicals contained in the extracts was made; the water extracts had higher antioxidant power than the alcohol extracts.
The anticancer effect of graviola water and alcohol extracts was determined against two different cell lines of breast cancer in lab testing. The ethanol extracts of graviola at high concentration caused 100% cancer cell death. The water extracts of the leaves had no anticancer effect at all concentrations. There was no toxic effect when the alcohol extracts were tested against normal spleen cells showing low toxicity against normal tissue.
CONCLUSION: Graviola water extracts were shown to be strongly antioxidant, and ethanol extracts were shown to be strongly anticancer against several types of breast cancer cells.
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