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Background: Plants still remain a prime source of drugs for the treatment of cancer and can provide leads for the development of novel anticancer agents. Our screening of indigenous medicinal plants from Tanzania has led to the identification of the number of anticancer activity.
Material and methods: The current study investigates the cytotoxic activity of methanol extracts of one hundred and thirty seven Tanzania plants used locally for the traditional medicine herb using the MTS assay on the HepG2 cell lines.
Result 16% of the tested plant extracts showed moderate to strong inhibitory activity with IC50 values ranging from 17.1 ± 1.1 μg/ml to 79.2 ± 0.7 μg/ml ; meanwhile, ten extracts (7.3%) could demonstrate cytotoxic activity with IC50 values less than 27.6 ± 2.0 μg/ml; twelve extracts (8.8%) could demonstrate cytotoxic activity with IC50 values ranging from 30.4 ± 1.6 μg/ml to 79.2 ± 0.7μg/ml.
Conclusion : Especially, a methanol extract from the bark extract of Erythrophleum zimmermannii (Fabaceae) was found to be the most cytotoxicity against HepG2 cell lines (IC50 = 17.1 ± 1.1 μg/ml).
Keywords: Medicinal plants; Cytotoxicity; Erythrophleum zimmermannii (Fabaceae)