Using Centella asiatica to decrease pro-inflammatory cytokine levels in leukemia patients

An extract derived from the leaves of the Centella asiatica plant, also known as gotu kola, has been found to reduce pro-inflammatory cytokine levels, which are linked to cachexia caused by cancer, according to a report by researchers at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa and Manipal University in India, published in BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine.

  • The effects of C. asiatica ethanolic leaf extract (CLE) in both leukemic THP-1 cells and normal peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) were studied to determine its effects on pro-inflammatory cytokine levels.
  • In the study, the researchers first studied the cytotoxicity of CLE using 24- and 72-hour intervals.
  • The antioxidant activity of CLE was tested using the 2, 2-diphenyl-1 picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) assay. In particular, glutathione and adenosine triphosphate levels, as well as caspase activities were also measured.
  • An enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay was used to identify the levels of tumor necrosis factor-? (TNF-?), interleukin (IL)-6, IL-1? and IL-10 in the samples.
  • Based on the results, CLE was able to reduce the viability of leukemic THP-1 cells by 28.404 percent in a 24-hour period. It increased antioxidant activity from 0.05 mg/mL to 0.8 mg/mL.
  • CLE also increased both glutathione levels and caspase activity for normal PBMC, while decreasing them in THP-1 cells. In particular, both caspase activity and ATP levels for both cell lines were reduced after 72 hours.

The findings suggest that CLE was able to increase antioxidant levels in both normal PBMC and THP-1 cells while reducing pro-inflammatory cytokine levels and regulating apoptosis and caspase activity, which can attenuate cancer cachexia.

Read the full text of the study at this link.

Learn more about natural ways to beat cachexia at

Journal Reference:

Naidoo DB, Chuturgoon AA, Phulukdaree A, Guruprasad KP, Satyamoorthy K, Sewram V. CENTELLA ASIATICA MODULATES CANCER CACHEXIA ASSOCIATED INFLAMMATORY CYTOKINES AND CELL DEATH IN LEUKAEMIC THP-1 CELLS AND PERIPHERAL BLOOD MONONUCLEAR CELLS (PBMC’S). BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 1 August 2017;17(1). (377). DOI: 10.1186/s12906-017-1865-2

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