Essential oils are widely used in the pharmaceutical industry for their antimicrobial, antiviral, antifungal, antiparasitic, and insecticidal properties. Their anticancer activity has been increasingly explored as the natural constituents of essential oils play an important role in cancer prevention and treatment. The chemical composition of essential oils includes monoterpenes, sesquiterpenes, oxygenated monoterpenes, phenolic sesquiterpenes, and others. Several mechanisms of action such as antioxidant, antimutagenic, antiproliferative, enhancement of immune functions, modulation of multidrug resistance, and synergistic mechanism of volatile constituents are responsible for their chemotherapeutic properties. This review focuses on the activity of essential oils and their chemical composition in regard to breast cancer.
Part of the book: Essential Oils