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Anticancer Activity of Essential Oils and Other Extracts from Aromatic Plants Grown in Greece

Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Democritus University of Thrace, University Campus, Dragana, 68100 Alexandroupolis, Greece
European Research Institute for the Biology of Ageing, University Medical Center Groningen, University of Groningen, Antonius Deusinglaan 1, 9713 AV, Groningen, The Netherlands
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Antioxidants 2019, 8(8), 290;
Received: 30 June 2019 / Revised: 31 July 2019 / Accepted: 2 August 2019 / Published: 7 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Natural Products in Health Promotion and Disease Prevention)
PDF [471 KB, uploaded 9 August 2019]


Aromatic plants have a long and significant history in the traditional medicine of many countries. Nowadays, there is an increasing interest in investigating the biological properties of aromatic plant extracts mainly due to their diversity, high availability, and low toxicity. Greece is abundant in aromatic plants, which can be attributed to the country’s geographical position, the morphology of its landscape, and its numerous mountainous and insular areas. In the past 15 years, a number of aromatic plant extracts of Greek origin have been studied for their bioactivities, including their antiproliferative potential against different types of cancer. Although the pharmacological activities of specific species of Greek origin have been reviewed before, no gathered information on explicitly Greek species exist. In this review, we summarize existing data on the antiproliferative activity of extracts isolated from Greek aromatic plants and discuss their molecular mode(s) of action, where available, in order to identify promising extracts for future research and link chemical constituents responsible for their activity. We conclude that essentials oils are the most frequently studied plant extracts exhibiting high diversity in their composition and anticancer potential, but also other extracts appear to be worthy of further investigation for cancer chemoprevention.
Keywords: aromatic plants; natural extracts; Greece; antiproliferative activity; cancer aromatic plants; natural extracts; Greece; antiproliferative activity; cancer
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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Fitsiou, E.; Pappa, A. Anticancer Activity of Essential Oils and Other Extracts from Aromatic Plants Grown in Greece. Antioxidants 2019, 8, 290.

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