Antiproliferative effect on human prostate cancer cells by a stinging nettle root (Urtica dioica) extract

Planta Med. 2000 Feb;66(1):44-7. doi: 10.1055/s-2000-11117.


In the present study the activity of a 20% methanolic extract of stinging nettle roots (Urtica dioica L., Urticaceae) on the proliferative activity of human prostatic epithelial (LNCaP) and stromal (hPCPs) cells was evaluated using a colorimetric assay. A concentration-dependent and significant (p < 0.05) antiproliferative effect of the extract was observed only on LNCaP cells during 7 days, whereas stromal cell growth remained unaltered. The inhibition was time-dependent with the maximum of growth reduction (30%) at a concentration of 1.0E-6 mg/ml on day 5 compared to the untreated control. On day 4 and 6, the reduction in proliferation of LNCaP cells showed the minimal effective dose at 1.0E-9 mg/ml. No cytotoxic effect of ME-20 on cell proliferation was observed. The antiproliferative effect of ME-20 of stinging nettle roots observed both in an in vivo model and in an in vitro system clearly indicates a biologically relevant effect of compounds present in the extract.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic / pharmacology*
  • Cell Division / drug effects*
  • Cell Line
  • Drug Screening Assays, Antitumor
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Plants, Medicinal / chemistry*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / pathology*


  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic
  • Plant Extracts