Therapeutic effect of Boswellia Carterri Birdw in Acute Myelocyctic Leukemia
Traditional Chinese Medicine is a potential source for modern cancer therapies but western technology and clinical trials are required properly to identify, understand, and evaluate the active components. This is best exemplified by the dramatic clinical responses to all trans retinoic acid and arsenic trioxide in the treatment of acute promyelocytic leukemia, now standard worldwide treatments. Arsenic trioxide was an important component of Traditional Chinese Medicine and became clinically effective, proven, and mechanistically understood when “traditional” clinical data was confirmed in clinical trials and experimentation. In this case, “Boswellia Caterri Birdw, an herb used in Traditional Chinese Medicine to treat cancer was recently found to contain boswellic acid acetate (BA) as a possible in vitro active component. Therefore, in keeping with the practice of traditional western clinical studies in proving the efficacy of Traditional Chinese Medicine, this experiment will demonstrate that crude extract of Boswellia Caterri Birdw and Boswellic acid acetate have potent and broad anti-leukemia activities based on the induction of differentiation and apoptosis. At this time we have the opportunity to extend the initial studies on Boswellic acid by creating structural analogues to determine which portion of the molecule is required for differentiation or apoptotic induction. This will be done in collaboration with the Shenyang Pharmaceutical University in China that has already demonstrated the ability to produce structural analogues of great purity. It is the goal of this experiment to expand and continue an active program to test agents for differentiation and apoptotic induction and define their mechanism in various leukemia cell lines. Furthermore, increased funding will help identify appropriate molecules to use in more extensive pre-clinical and eventually clinical studies that would have impact on the treatment of leukemia.