The development and progression of many diseases is related with an inflammatory process, which could affect different organs or tissues. Currently, many drugs are used to treat inflammation. However, some of these compounds induce severe side effects. For this reason, the search of new therapeutic options for the treatment of inflammation is very desirable. Medicinal plants have been an interesting source for obtaining new active compounds, including several terpenes and terpenoids with anti-inflammatory activity. This book chapter includes 62 sesquiterpenes, 34 diterpenes, and 22 triterpenes with anti-inflammatory activity. The anti-inflammatory effect was evaluated using in vitro, in vivo, and both models. These terpenes were obtained from 44 plant species belonging to 25 botanical families. Eight of theses species belong to the Asteraceae family and four to Lamiaceae family, respectively, and the other species belong to 13 different botanical families, one sesquiterpene was obtained from a sponge and two diterpenes were isolated from corals.
Part of the book: Terpenes and Terpenoids
The WHO says that annual cases of cancer will increase from 14 million in 2012 to 22 million in the next two decades. Cancer is the second cause of death in the world; in 2015, it caused 8.8 million deaths. On the other hand, it is necessary to consider that 70% of the total deaths due to this disease occur in developing countries, who have the least resources to acquire the drugs of choice for the treatment of this disease. Although there are treatments and these are effective, there are currently cases of resistance to drugs used to treat this disease, which has led to the search for new sources of drugs or compounds effective against the cancer being active; plants are the possible sources to achieve this. Cucurbitaceae is a family of plants widely distributed on the planet which has been used traditionally for the treatment of this disease and from they have been isolated different cucurbitanes. These compounds possess a wide biological activity, antidiabetic, anti-inflammatory, hepatoprotective, or cytotoxic and antitumoral effects. The aim of this review is to present 51 cucurbitacin compounds and 2 with different structures isolated from Cucurbitaceae plants with cytotoxic or antitumoral activity.
Part of the book: Pharmacognosy