BioScience Trends. 2019;13(6):476-487. (DOI: 10.5582/bst.2019.01323)

A review of traditional Chinese medicine for treatment of glioblastoma.

Wang JJ, Qi FH, Wang ZX, Zhang ZK, Pan N, Huai L, Qu SY, Zhao L


Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most common primary malignant intracranial tumor. Due to its high morbidity, high mortality, high recurrence rate, and low cure rate, it has brought great difficulty for treatment. Although the current treatment is multimodal, including surgical resection, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy, it does not significantly improve survival time. The dismal prognosis and inevitable recurrence as well as resistance to chemoradiotherapy may be related to its highly cellular heterogeneity and multiple subclonal populations. Traditional Chinese medicine has its own unique advantages in the prevention and treatment of it. A comprehensive literature search of anti-glioblastoma active ingredients and derivatives from traditional Chinese medicine was carried out in literature published in PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science Cochrane library, CNKI, Wanfang, and VIP database. Hence, this article systematically reviews experimental research progress of some traditional Chinese medicine in treatment of glioblastoma from two aspects: strengthening vital qi and eliminating pathogenic qi. Among, strengthening vital qi medicine includes panax ginseng, licorice, lycium barbarum, angelica sinensis; eliminating pathogenic medicine includes salvia miltiorrhiza bunge, scutellaria baicalensis, coptis rhizoma, thunder god vine, and sophora flavescens. We found that the same active ingredient can act on different signaling pathways, such as ginsenoside Rg3 inhibited proliferation and induced apoptosis via the AKT, MEK signal pathway. Hence, this multi-target, multi-level pathway may bring on a new dawn for the treatment of glioblastoma.

KEYWORDS: Glioblastoma (GBM), traditional Chinese medicines (TCMs), active ingredients, migration and invasion, autophagy, signal pathway

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