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Mistletoe and tumour

Anja Thronicke, Megan L Steele, Christian Grah, Burkhard Matthes, Friedemann Schad
BACKGROUND: Despite improvement of tumour response rates in patients with progressive and metastatic cancer, immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICM) induce toxicities in cancer patients. Viscum album L. (VA, mistletoe) extracts are applied as add-on cancer therapy especially in German speaking countries and within integrative and anthroposophical concepts with the goal to improve quality of life. The primary objective of this pilot observational cohort study was to determine the rate of adverse events (AE) related to ICM therapy with and without VA in patients with advanced or metastatic cancer in a certified Cancer Center...
December 13, 2017: BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Friedemann Schad, Anja Thronicke, Antje Merkle, Harald Matthes, Megan L Steele
BACKGROUND: Immune-related adverse drug reactions (ADRs) to immunotherapy agents have been associated with beneficial clinical outcomes in oncology. Viscum album L. (VA, European mistletoe) is frequently used as an immunomodulatory agent alongside conventional cancer treatment in Europe. VA has been associated with improved quality of life and a reduction in chemotherapy-related ADRs. Beneficial effects of VA are believed to be related to its immunomodulatory properties. Current guidelines recommend commencing with a low dose and increasing slowly overtime, however, off-label prescribing of high initial doses is common...
December 1, 2017: Phytomedicine: International Journal of Phytotherapy and Phytopharmacology
Rahel Mascha Stammer, Susann Kleinsimon, Jana Rolff, Sebastian Jäger, Angelika Eggert, Georg Seifert, Catharina I Delebinski
Aqueous mistletoe extracts from the European mistletoe (Viscum album) contain mainly mistletoe lectins and viscotoxins as cytotoxic compounds. Lipophilic triterpene acids, which do not occur in conventional mistletoe preparations, were solubilised with β-cyclodextrins. The combination of an aqueous extract (viscum) and a triterpene-containing extract (TT) recreated a whole mistletoe extract (viscumTT). These extracts were tested on rhabdomyosarcoma in vitro, ex vivo, and in vivo with regard to anticancer effects...
2017: Journal of Immunology Research
Catharina I Delebinski, Monika Twardziok, Susann Kleinsimon, Florian Hoff, Katharina Mulsow, Jana Rolff, Sebastian Jäger, Angelika Eggert, Georg Seifert
Aqueous Viscum album L. extracts are widely used in complementary cancer medicine. Hydrophobic triterpene acids also possess anti-cancer properties, but due to their low solubility they do not occur in significant amounts in aqueous extracts. Using cyclodextrins we solubilised mistletoe triterpenes (mainly oleanolic acid) and investigated the effect of a mistletoe whole plant extract on human acute myeloid leukaemia cells in vitro, ex vivo and in vivo. Single Viscum album L. extracts containing only solubilised triterpene acids (TT) or lectins (viscum) inhibited cell proliferation and induced apoptosis in a dose-dependent manner in vitro and ex vivo...
2015: PloS One
Myriam Estko, Stephan Baumgartner, Konrad Urech, Matthias Kunz, Ursula Regueiro, Peter Heusser, Ulrike Weissenstein
BACKGROUND: Macrophages are highly versatile cells that play an important role in tumour microenvironment. Tumour associated macrophages (TAMs) have been linked to both, good or bad prognosis of several cancer types depending on their number, composition and polarization. Viscum album lipophilic extract (VALE) contains several pentacyclic triterpenes known to modulate the activity of monocytes and other immune cells and to exhibit anticancer properties. In our in vitro study, we investigated the effect of tumour cell lines on macrophage polarization and monocyte chemotactic transmigration and examined the modulatory potential of VALE and its predominant triterpene oleanolic acid (OA)...
2015: BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Tido von Schoen-Angerer, Andreas Goyert, Jan Vagedes, Helmut Kiene, Harald Merckens, Gunver S Kienle
BACKGROUND AND AIM: Extracts of Viscum album (European mistletoe) have immune-stimulatory and cytotoxic effects, with trials showing a well-established effect on the quality of life and prolonged survival in patients with advanced pancreatic cancer. Regression of tumours following intratumoural injection with Viscum album extract has been documented in individual cases. However, its influence on colon polyps has not been investigated. CASE PRESENTATION: We present the case of a 78-year-old Caucasian male who had undergone hemi-colectomy for a stage IIIC colon cancer but who refused adjuvant chemotherapy...
December 2014: Journal of Gastrointestinal and Liver Diseases: JGLD
Rabab Gaafar, Abdel Rahman M Abdel Rahman, Fatma Aboulkasem, Ahmed El Bastawisy
BACKGROUND: Malignant pleural effusion is a common problem in patients with solid tumours. It has a significant impact on quality of life, and, hence, there is a substantial need to investigate new agents to treat it. PATIENTS AND METHODS: This is a prospective randomised controlled study, including patients with symptomatic recurrent malignant pleural effusion of different primaries. Patients were randomised into two groups: the first group received five ampoules of mistletoe preparation with defined lectin content (Viscum Fraxini-2, ATOS Pharma) diluted in 10 cc glucose 5% solution...
2014: Ecancermedicalscience
Alessandra Longhi, Marcus Reif, Erminia Mariani, Stefano Ferrari
Background. Osteosarcoma is a highly malignant bone tumour. After the second relapse, the 12-month postrelapse disease-free survival (PRDFS) rate decreases below 20%. Oral Etoposide is often used in clinical practice after surgery as an "adjuvant" outside any protocol and with only limited evidence of improved survival. Viscum album fermentatum Pini (Viscum) is an extract of mistletoe plants grown on pine trees for subcutaneous (sc) injection with immunomodulatory activity. Methods. Encouraged by preliminary findings, we conducted a study where osteosarcoma patients free from disease after second metastatic relapse were randomly assigned to Viscum sc or Oral Etoposide...
2014: Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine: ECAM
Megan L Steele, Jan Axtner, Antje Happe, Matthias Kröz, Harald Matthes, Friedemann Schad
Background. In Europe, mistletoe extracts are widely used as a complementary cancer therapy. We assessed the safety of subcutaneous mistletoe as a conjunctive therapy in cancer patients within an anthroposophic medicine setting in Germany. Methods. A multicentre, observational study was performed within the Network Oncology. Suspected mistletoe adverse drug reactions (ADRs) were described by frequency, causality, severity, and seriousness. Potential risk factors, dose relationships and drug-drug interactions were investigated...
2014: Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine: ECAM
Z Liu, Y Luo, T-T Zhou, W-Z Zhang
Plant lectins, a group of highly diverse carbohydrate-binding proteins of non-immune origin, are ubiquitously distributed through a variety of plant species, and have recently drawn rising attention due to their remarkable ability to kill tumour cells using mechanisms implicated in autophagy. In this review, we provide a brief outline of structures of some representative plant lectins such as concanavalin A, Polygonatum cyrtonema lectin and mistletoe lectins. These can target autophagy by modulating BNIP-3, ROS-p38-p53, Ras-Raf and PI3KCI-Akt pathways, as well as Beclin-1, in many types of cancer cells...
October 2013: Cell Proliferation
Gil Bar-Sela, Mira Wollner, Liat Hammer, Abed Agbarya, Elizabeth Dudnik, Nissim Haim
INTRODUCTION: Mistletoe preparations, such as iscador, are common complementary medications. This randomised phase II study of iscador combined with carboplatin-containing regimens was conducted in chemotherapy-naïve advanced non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients to assess its influence on chemotherapy-related side-effects and QoL. METHODS: Patients with advanced NSCLC were randomised to receive chemotherapy alone or chemotherapy plus iscador thrice weekly until tumour progression...
March 2013: European Journal of Cancer
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No abstract text is available yet for this article.
October 15, 2011: Phytomedicine: International Journal of Phytotherapy and Phytopharmacology
Gunver S Kienle, Renate Grugel, Helmut Kiene
BACKGROUND: Viscum album L extracts (VAE, mistletoe) and isolated mistletoe lectins (ML) have immunostimulating properties and a strong dose-dependent cytotoxic activity. They are frequently used in complementary cancer treatment, mainly to improve quality of life, but partly also to influence tumour growth, especially by injecting VAE locally and in high dosage. The question is raised whether these higher dosages can induce any harm or immunosuppressive effects. METHODS: Systematic review of all experiments and clinical studies investigating higher dosages of VAE in animals and humans (Viscum album > 1 mg in humans corresponding to > 0...
August 28, 2011: BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Heinz Zwierzina, Lothar Bergmann, Heiner Fiebig, Steinar Aamdal, Patrick Schöffski, Klaus Witthohn, Hans Lentzen
Extracts from the European mistletoe plant Viscumalbum have been studied for decades for their direct and indirect anticancer activity. Therefore, scientists were interested in identifying the active compound (mistletoe lectin) in these extracts and making it available as a highly purified molecule for drug development. Recombinant mistletoe lectin (INN: aviscumine) was produced in Escherichiacoli. It has been shown to have immunomodulatory and cytotoxic activity in invitro and in animal models and can target tumour cells...
July 2011: European Journal of Cancer
Hans-Robert Metelmann, Peter Hyckel, Fred Podmelle
Treating a patient suffering from an advanced oral cavity carcinoma by peritumoural injections of mistletoe preparation resulted in a surprising partial response. At the same time an early metastasis, located at the kidney, however remained unaffected. The main difference in treatment being peritumoural versus systematic application supports the hypothesis of immune surveillance. The impact of mistletoe extract in direct contact with the tumour tissue might be explained as activation of macrophage polarization followed by induced cytotoxicity...
February 2012: Journal of Cranio-maxillo-facial Surgery
Stuart A Rushworth
Micro-RNAs (miRNAs) are small RNA molecules that regulate the expression of genes involved in development, growth, proliferation and apoptosis. In cancer several miRNAs have been functionally classified as oncogenes or tumour suppressers or act to regulate transcription factors, like nuclear factor kappa B and NF-E2–related factor 2, in cancers such as leukaemia, breast and colorectal. Therefore, it has been proposed that manipulating miRNA regulation may be a novel avenue for developing efficient therapies against cancer...
January 2011: British Journal of Pharmacology
Melanie N Laszczyk
Today cancer treatment is not only a question of eliminating cancer cells by induction of cell death. New therapeutic strategies also include targeting the tumour microenvironment, avoiding angiogenesis, modulating the immune response or the chronic inflammation that is often associated with cancer. Furthermore, the induction of redifferentiation of dedifferentiated cancer cells is an interesting aspect in developing new therapy strategies. Plants provide a broad spectrum of potential drug substances for cancer therapy with multifaceted effects and targets...
December 2009: Planta Medica
Jörg Melzer, Felix Iten, Katarina Hostanska, Reinhard Saller
BACKGROUND: Mistletoe is often used as a complementary approach in oncology. Despite experimental anti-tumour effects and several reviews there remains controversy about its clinical role. PATIENTS AND METHODS: Potentially relevant trials were identified to perform a systematic review (databases: e.g. EMBASE, MEDLINE; hand search: e.g. bibliographies; search terms: e.g. mistletoe). To be included, randomised or comparative clinical trials at least had to examine mistletoe preparations standardized according to manufacturing process and to describe interventions explicitly...
August 2009: Forschende Komplementärmedizin, Research in Complementary Medicine
Gunver S Kienle, Anja Glockmann, Michael Schink, Helmut Kiene
BACKGROUND: Viscum album L. extracts (VAE, European mistletoe) are a widely used medicinal plant extract in gynaecological and breast-cancer treatment. METHODS: Systematic review to evaluate clinical studies and preclinical research on the therapeutic effectiveness and biological effects of VAE on gynaecological and breast cancer. Search of databases, reference lists and expert consultations. Criteria-based assessment of methodological study quality. RESULTS: 19 randomized (RCT), 16 non-randomized (non-RCT) controlled studies, and 11 single-arm cohort studies were identified that investigated VAE treatment of breast or gynaecological cancer...
2009: Journal of Experimental & Clinical Cancer Research: CR
Rainer Stange, Annette Jänsch, Sabine Schrag, Christine Pflugbeil, Dietrich Schlodder, Ursula Pandey-Hoffmann, Bernhard Uehleke
Malignant ascites is a frequent complication in oncological diseases. There are no standard therapies for any primary tumour. We report the case of a woman, aged 49 years at the time of primary diagnosis, who suffered from recurrent ascites resulting from liver metastasis of breast cancer. Based on the literature and former experience of our department, mistletoe extract was repeatedly applied intraperitoneally at the occasion of decompressive punctures. The further course of the disease suggests a significant role of mistletoe in achieved symptom control, which also resulted in a considerable improvement in quality of life...
February 2009: Forschende Komplementärmedizin, Research in Complementary Medicine
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