For Patients & Caregivers
How It Works
Zyflamend has not been shown to treat cancer. Studies in humans are very limited.
Zyflamend is an herbal supplement consisting of Holy basil, turmeric, ginger, green tea, rosemary, hu zhang, Chinese goldthread, barberry, oregano, and skullcap. Promoters of Zyflamend claim that it has anti-inflammatory and antiaging effects. In a few in lab studies, it has been shown to reduce inflammation and levels of certain enzymes that produce estrogen. It can also cause cell death. Results from a small study indicate it may help lower prostate specific antigen (PSA), a marker of prostate cancer. More research is needed.
- Cancer treatment A few lab studies show that Zyflamend can reduce the number of prostate cancer cells and also decrease some markers related to some types of breast cancer. Zyflamend did not cause serious adverse events in men with prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia and also decreased certain prostate disease-related markers. More research is needed.
- Inflammation A few lab studies show that Zyflamend reduces inflammation but there are no data from clinical trials.
Do Not Take If
For Healthcare Professionals
Zyflamend is a formulation containing 10 different herbs. It is marketed as a dietary supplement for healthy inflammation response and normal cardiovascular and joint function (1).
Preliminary studies suggest that the ingredients in Zyflamend have anti-inflammatory, antiangiogenic, and antiproliferative properties (2) (12) (13) (14). Zyflamend inhibits the proliferation of oral squamous carcinoma (3), pancreatic cancer (4), and melanoma (5), and cisplatin-resistant bladder cancer cells (15).
In an animal model, it inhibited the growth of both hormone-sensitive and hormone-insensitive prostate cancer, and reduced the expression of prostate specific antigen (PSA) (6). It can also suppress elevated levels of proinflammatory mediators and aromatase in obese models (7)and significantly reduced adipose tissue in mice (16).
In a phase I trial in men with prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia, Zyflamend did not cause any serious adverse events, and significant reductions in serum levels of C-reactive protein and nuclear factor-kappa B levels were observed (8). There have also been a few cases of clinical response to combination therapy that included a Zyflamend regimen in patients with castration-resistant prostate cancer (17). More studies are warranted to evaluate safety and effectiveness.
Mechanism of Action
Ingredients in Zyflamend, including holy basil, turmeric, ginger, green tea, rosemary, hu zhang, Chinese gold thread, and Scutellaria, inhibit cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) activity and thereby reduce inflammation.
In vitro studies show that Zyflamend inhibits inflammatory enzymes, decreases retinoblastoma (Rb) protein phosphorylation (10), and induces apoptosis in human prostate cancer cells (2) (3) (4) (11). It also reduced androgen receptor signaling and enhanced bicalutamide-induced apoptosis (9). Other studies in prostate cancer cell lines suggest that Zyflamend inhibits class I and class II histone deacetylase expression, upregulates p21 expression (13), and regulates upstream kinases LKB1 and CaMKK2 via AMPK activation (14).
In melanoma cells, Zyflamend induces autophagy and apoptosis sequentially by activating the intrinsic caspase cascade. Cell migration and COX-2 expression were also suppressed (5). It was also shown to inhibit NF-kappa B activation in myeloid leukemia, lung adenocarcinoma (2), pancreatic (4), and cisplatin-resistant bladder cancer cells (15). In leukoplakia and skin cell lines, both Zyflamend and carnosol, an antioxidant phenolic constituent, inhibited mutagenesis via Hsp90 ATPase inhibition, which led to reduced aryl hydrocarbon receptor levels and CYP1A1 and CYP1B1 suppression (12).
Both a cellular model of obesity-related inflammation and an obese animal model indicate that Zyflamend blocks proinflammatory mediators and aromatase induction as well as Akt and NF-kB activation. Increased aromatase mRNA levels and mammary gland activity were also partially inhibited (7). Reduction of adiposity was attributed to AMPK activation (16).
In a murine xenograft model of prostate cancer, Zyflamend inhibited androgen-dependent tumor growth and histone deacetylase-5, biomarkers linked to prostate cancer progression (6). It also reduced the number of inflammatory cells, hyperplasia and dysplasia, and tumor incidence and number, and inhibited cell proliferation in an animal model of oral squamous cell carcinoma (3).