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Friday, June 13, 2008

Anti-Cancer Effects of Sandalwood Essential Oil on the Skin Studied

Sandalwood oil and paste has long been used in traditional Indian medicine (Ayurveda) for the treatment of skin inflammations. Several studies have now described the chemoprotective (anti-cancer) action of sandalwood oil and its chemical constituents. The protective effects occcur for skin exposed both to ultra-violet radiation or exposed to known cancer-causing chemical agents. While Indian sandalwood is becoming more rare and expensive, Australian and Pacific Island sandalwood oils are more reasonably priced. They have also been favorably compared to the Indian variety under chemical analysis, containing significant amounts of 'santalols', one of the unique active components in sandalwood essential oil. Here are a few studies describing the effects - for practical application, sandalwood oil can be included in a plain lotion base or carrier oil formula at a 1-3% concentration and applied before and after sun exposure. Sea Buckthorn essential oil is also considered protective for sunlight exposure.

Study: Effects of alpha-santalol on proapoptotic caspases and p53 expression in UVB irradiated mouse skin.

Arasada BL, Bommareddy A, Zhang X, Bremmon K, Dwivedi C. Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, South Dakota State University, Brookings, SD 57007, USA.

BACKGROUND: Cancer chemoprevention by naturally occurring agents, especially phytochemicals, minerals and vitamins has shown promising results against various malignancies in a number of studies both under in vitro and in vivo conditions. One such phytochemical, alpha-santalol, a major component of sandalwood oil, is effective in preventing skin cancer in both chemically and UVB-induced skin cancer development in CD-1, SENCAR and SKH-1 mice; however, the mechanism of its efficacy is not fully understood. The objective of the present investigation was to study the effects of alpha-santalol on apoptosis proteins and p53 in UVB-induced skin tumor development in SKH-1 mice to elucidate the mechanism of action. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Female SKH-1 mice were divided into two groups: Group 1, which served as control received topical application of acetone (0.1 ml) one hour before UVB treatment; Group 2 received alpha-santalol (0.1 ml, 5% w/v in acetone, topical) one hour prior to UVB treatment. UVB-induced promotion was continued for 30 weeks. RESULTS: Pre-treatment with alpha-santalol one hour prior to UVB exposure significantly (p < 0.05) reduced tumor incidence and multiplicity, and resulted in a significant (p < 0.05) increase in apoptosis proteins, caspase-3 and -8 levels and tumor suppressor protein, p53. CONCLUSION: These results suggest that alpha-santalol prevents skin cancer development by inducing proapoptotic proteins via an extrinsic pathway and increasing p53.

Study: Chemopreventive effects of alpha-santalol (a primary component of Sandalwood essential oil) on ultraviolet B radiation-induced skin tumor development in SKH-1 hairless mice.

Dwivedi C, Valluri HB, Guan X, Agarwal R. Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmacy, South Dakota State University, Brookings, SD 57007 USA

Recent studies from our laboratory have shown the chemopreventive effects of alpha-santalol against 7,12-dimethylbenzanthracene (DMBA) initiated and 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA) promoted skin tumor development in mice. The objective of the present investigation was to study the effects of alpha-santalol on ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation-induced skin tumor development and UVB-caused increase in epidermal ornithine decarboxylase (ODC) activity in female hairless SKH-1 mice. For the tumor studies, 180 mice were divided into three groups of 60 mice each, and each group was divided into two subgroups of 30 mice. The first subgroup served as control and was treated topically on the dorsal skin with acetone. The second subgroup served as experimental and was treated topically on the dorsal skin with alpha-santalol (5%, w/v in acetone). The tumorigenesis in the first group was initiated with UVB radiation and promoted with TPA; in the second group it was initiated with DMBA and promoted with UVB radiation; and in the third group it was both initiated and promoted with UVB radiation. In each case, the study was terminated at 30 weeks. Topical application of alpha-santalol significantly (P<0.05)>

Study: Chemopreventive effects of sandalwood essential oil on skin papillomas in mice.

Dwivedi C, Abu-Ghazaleh A. College of Pharmacy, South Dakota State University, Brookings 57007-0099, USA

The essential oil, emulsion or paste of sandalwood (Santalum album L) has been used in India as an ayurvedic medicinal agent for the treatment of inflammatory and eruptive skin diseases. In this investigation, the chemopreventive effects of sandalwood oil (5% in acetone, w/v) on 7,12-dimethylbenz(a)anthracene-(DMBA)-initiated and 12-O-tetradecanoyl phorbol-13-acetate(TPA)-promoted skin papillomas, and TPA-induced ornithine decarboxylase (ODC) activity in CD1 mice were studied. Sandalwood oil treatment significantly decreased papilloma incidence by 67%, multiplicity by 96%, and TPA-induced ODC activity by 70%. This essential oil could be an effective chemopreventive agent against skin cancer.

*The FDA has not evaluated the statements on this website. The information presented here is for educational purposes of traditional uses and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any diseases.

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