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Mar. Drugs 2015, 13(4), 2327-2346; doi:10.3390/md13042327

Fucoidan and Cancer: A Multifunctional Molecule with Anti-Tumor Potential

1
Menzies Institute for Medical Research, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Tasmania 7000, Australia
2
School of Medicine, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Tasmania 7000, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Keith B. Glaser
Received: 24 February 2015 / Revised: 25 March 2015 / Accepted: 3 April 2015 / Published: 14 April 2015
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Abstract

There is a wide variety of cancer types yet, all share some common cellular and molecular behaviors. Most of the chemotherapeutic agents used in cancer treatment are designed to target common deregulated mechanisms within cancer cells. Many healthy tissues are also affected by the cytotoxic effects of these chemical agents. Fucoidan, a natural component of brown seaweed, has anti-cancer activity against various cancer types by targeting key apoptotic molecules. It also has beneficial effects as it can protect against toxicity associated with chemotherapeutic agents and radiation. Thus the synergistic effect of fucoidan with current anti-cancer agents is of considerable interest. This review discusses the mechanisms by which fucoidan retards tumor development, eradicates tumor cells and synergizes with anti-cancer chemotherapeutic agents. Challenges to the development of fucoidan as an anti-cancer agent will also be discussed. View Full-Text
Keywords: fucoidan; cancer; apoptosis; synergy fucoidan; cancer; apoptosis; synergy
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Atashrazm, F.; Lowenthal, R.M.; Woods, G.M.; Holloway, A.F.; Dickinson, J.L. Fucoidan and Cancer: A Multifunctional Molecule with Anti-Tumor Potential. Mar. Drugs 2015, 13, 2327-2346.

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