Garcinol, harvested from Garcinia indica, has traditionally been used in tropical regions and appreciated for centuries; however its biological properties are only beginning to be elucidated. There is ample data to suggest potent antioxidant properties of this compound which have been used to explain most of its observed biological activities. However, emerging evidence suggests that garcinol could be useful as an anti-cancer agent, and it is increasingly being realized that garcinol is a pleiotropic agent capable of modulating key regulatory cell signaling pathways. Here we have summarized the progress of our current research knowledge on garcinol and its observed biological activities. We have also provided an explanation of observed properties based on its chemical structure and provided an insight into the structure and properties of chalcones, the precursors of garcinol. The available data is promising but more detailed investigations into the various properties of this compound, particularly its anti-cancer activity are urgently needed, and it is our hope that this review will stimulate further research for elucidating and appreciating the value of this nature's wonder agent.
Nutrition | Pathology
Padhye et al. Journal of Hematology & Oncology 2009, 2:38