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Research Progress on Artemisinin and Its Derivatives against Hematological Malignancies

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Although current therapeutic methods against hematological malignancies are effective in the early stage, they usually lose their effectiveness because of the development of drug resistances. Seeking new drugs with significant therapeutic effects is one of the current research hotspots. Artemisinin, an extract from the plant Artemisia annua Linne, and its derivatives have excellent antimalarial effects in clinical applications as well as excellent safety. Recent studies have documented that artemisinin and its derivatives (ARTs) also have significant effects against multiple types of tumours, including hematological malignancies. This review focuses on the latest research achievements of ARTs in the treatment of hematological malignancies as well as its mechanisms and future applications. The mechanisms of ARTs against different types of hematological malignancies mainly include cell cycle arrest, induction autophagy and apoptosis, inhibition of angiogenesis, production of reactive oxygen species, and induction of differentiation. Additionally, the review also summarizes the anticancer effects of ARTs in many drug-resistant hematological malignancies and its synergistic effects with other drugs.

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Author information

Li Y was responsible for reviewing the literature, summarizing data and was a major contributor in writing the manuscript. Shan NN and Sui XH conceptualized and developed an outline for the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript for publication.

Correspondence to Ying Li.

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The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

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Supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 81570104), Key Research and Development Project of Shandong Province (No. 2015GSF118025, 2015GSF118058, 2016GSF201026)

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Li, Y., Shan, N. & Sui, X. Research Progress on Artemisinin and Its Derivatives against Hematological Malignancies. Chin. J. Integr. Med. (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11655-019-3207-3

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  • artemisinin
  • artesunate
  • dihydroartemisinin
  • hematological malignancies
  • review