This chapter reports the ability of African medicinal spices and vegetables to tackle malignant diseases. The main in vitro cytotoxicity methods, such as 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyl-2H-tetrazolium bromide (MTT), 2,3-bis (2-methoxy-4-nitro-5-sulfophenyl)-5-[(phenylamino) carbonyl]-2H-tetrazolium hydroxide (XTT), (3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-5-(3-carboxymethoxyphenyl)-2-(4-sulfophenyl)-2H-tetrazolium) (MTS), resazurin assay, sulforhodamine B assay (SRB), and neutral red uptake assay are also discussed. Data were retrieved from published articles, available in scientific databases, such as Pubmed, ScienceDirect, Scopus, Google Scholar, and Web of Knowledge, related to African medicinal spices and vegetables, isolated compounds, and cancer cells. The most prominent cytotoxic extracts from spices and vegetables included Aframomum arundinaceum, Xylopia aethiopica, Echinops giganteus, Imperata cylindrica, Piper capense, Dorstenia psilurus, Zingiber officinale, Brassica rapa, Cleome gynandra, Colocasia esculenta, Corchorus olitorius, Moringa oleifera, Solanum nigrum, and Vigna unguiculata. The likely mode of action of reported extracts and compounds included induction of apoptosis, coupled to cell cycle arrest either in G0/G1 or between G0/G1 and S-phases in cancer cells, disruption of the mitochondrial membrane potential, generation of reactive oxygen species as well as activation of caspases enzymes.
Elsevier, Kuete, Medicinal Spices and Vegetables from Africa, 2017, Pages 271 - 297