Anti-Cancer Biosurfactants


Biosurfactants produced by different types of microorganisms are amphiphilic biomolecules with active surface properties. Recently, biosurfactants have emerged as promising agents for cancer therapy since a high diversity of these molecules has shown the ability to induce cytotoxicity against many cancer cell lines, thus regulating cancer progression processes. In this sense, microbial biosurfactants are a potential alternative to current cancer therapeutics and as drug delivery systems of anti-cancer drugs. This chapter covers the current knowledge of microbial surfactants with anti-cancer potential, providing information on their production, structure, and research on diverse cancer cell lines, namely, breast and lungs cancer, leukemia, melanoma, and colon cancer. The potential application of biosurfactants in drug delivery is also reviewed.


Flávia F. Magalhães, João C. F. Nunes, Marília T. Araújo, Ana M. Ferreira, Mafalda R. Almeida, Mara G. Freire, Ana P. M. Tavares

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