Methods for Preclinical Evaluation of Bioactive Natural Products

Cytotoxic Activity Methods

Author(s): Esra Emerce* and Kevser Taban Akça

Pp: 149-176 (28)

DOI: 10.2174/9789815123043123010007

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


Natural products have formed the basis of traditional medicine systems throughout human history. Today, drug discovery studies from natural origins continue rapidly and efficiently with modern methods. Among the many activities, cytotoxic activity is related to the behaviour of test material on cell viability and cellular growth. Cytotoxicity methods, used as a screening test or initial test for guiding other activities, provide useful information for biocompatibility studies for medical devices or materials, drug discovery and development processes, toxicity evaluation of cosmetics, research of disease mechanisms and treatments, and determination of chemopreventive agents. In vitro cytotoxicity analyses have emerged as an alternative to in vivo studies and have become preferable due to their ease of application, standardization, rapid, low cost, and compatibility with data from in vivo studies. With cell-based cytotoxicity studies, basic information about the cytostatic and cytotoxic effects of the tested substance is obtained. In studies dealing with natural products, the most appropriate cytotoxic method should be selected according to the properties and chemical structures of natural compounds, the ultimate goal of the study, cell types, etc. Although there are many cytotoxicity methods, this chapter is an introductory overview of the most commonly used assay methods to estimate the cytotoxic activity in natural products. 

Keywords: Cytotoxicity, Natural products, Phytochemicals, Colorimetric Methods, Metabolic cell proliferation assays, Dye exclusion assays.

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