Vincristine belongs to the family of organic compounds namely vinca alkaloids. Vinca alkaloids are formed from carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen and oxygen that obtain from the periwinkle plant. Vinca alkaloids compounds are used as drugs including vincristine, these drugs block the cancer cell development by stopping the mitosis by snooping with microtubule polymerization. Vincristine is known for its efficient results among other chemotherapy drugs, it is used in the treatment of number of cancer such as lung cancer, breast cancer and bladder cancer etc. it is used in permutation with other chemotherapy drugs to treat certain type of leukemia (cancer of the white blood cells), as well as acute lymphoblastic leukemia and acute myeloid leukemia, Hodgkin’s lymphoma and non Hodgkin’s lymphoma. In other cases vincristine is also used with combination of other drugs to treat Wilms tumor (kidney cancer that happens in children), neuroblastoma (a cancer of nerve cells mostly happens in children) and other type of cancer.
- Molecular formula: C46H56N4O10
- Molar mass: 824.958 g/mol
- Density: 1.4±1.0 g/cm
- Metabolism: Liver , mostly via CYP3A4 and CYP3A5
- Elimination half-life: 19-155 hour
BRIEF DESCRIPTION AND NATURAL SOURCE
Vincristine is alkaloids mainly found in Madagascar periwinkle, Catharanthus roseus (vinca rosea). The vinca rosea was natively used throughout the world centuries ago to treat much kind of ailments from wasp sting to eye infections. It was traditionally being used to treat diabetes. Research has been started to investigate the benefits of the plants in 1950’s. Researchers discovered that this plant contains more than 70 alkaloids. And the all alkaloids come with number of benefits, some were found to lower the blood glucose level in diabetes patients and some acts as hemostatics. But vincristine became the attention of researchers, which was found to reduce the high number of white blood cells in blood. High number of white blood cells leads to leukemia. Then a new anti cancer drug was discovered.
It can be further used to treat the certain type of brain tumors, multiple myeloma(cancer of bone marrow), lung cancer, bladder cancer, Kaposi’s sarcoma (cancer that cause abnormal tissue to grow on different parts of the body), Ewings sarcoma(cancer in muscles), gestational trophoblastic tumors (a tumor formed inside the women’s uterus while in pregnancy) and thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (a condition that forms the blood clots in small blood vessels in the body).
HOW IT WORKS
Vincristine works partly by preventing mitosis in metaphase. These alkaloids works by binding the tubulin, which stops the polymerization of tubulin to produce microtubules, preventing the cell from making the spindles it needs to be able to divide and causing the cell to be incapable to split its chromosomes during the metaphase. So the cell undergoes apoptosis. Another method of action of vincristine is snooping with nucleic acid and protein synthesis by jamming glutamic acid utilization.
SAFETY AND PRECAUTIONS
If breast feeding mother use vincristine it will be harmful for her child
Advice should be gain by your doctor before using vincristine if any herbal medicine you are taking.
If patient faced any nerve disorder in the past then vincristine use should be avoided or used with the prescription of your health care provider.
If patient had ever faced lung or liver disease or went through a radiation therapy, tell the doctor before using the vincristine.
Vincristine may interact with the normal menstrual cycle in women and stop sperm production in men, tell your health care provider if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Women never should get pregnant if taking vincristine it may harm the fetus.
Do not use aspirin during the use of vincristine or consult your doctor.
■ While using/taking vincristine if you feel any of the symptom call your doctor right away.
■ Sore mouth
■ Weight loss
■ Stomach pain
■ Hair fall
Some side effects may cause serious condition if you feel any of them call your doctor immediately.
■ Loss of hearing
■ Difficulty breathing
■ Swelling of any, face, arms, leg, hands, feet, ankles.
■ Unusual bleeding
■ Blur vision
■ Itching, dizziness, hives, rash
■ Problem urinating
■ Abdominal pain