Anticancer activity of essential oils and their chemical components - a review

Am J Cancer Res. 2014 Nov 19;4(6):591-607. eCollection 2014.


Essential oils are widely used in pharmaceutical, sanitary, cosmetic, agriculture and food industries for their bactericidal, virucidal, fungicidal, antiparasitical and insecticidal properties. Their anticancer activity is well documented. Over a hundred essential oils from more than twenty plant families have been tested on more than twenty types of cancers in last past ten years. This review is focused on the activity of essential oils and their components on various types of cancers. For some of them the mechanisms involved in their anticancer activities have been carried out.

Keywords: Essential oils; anticancer activity; chemical composition.

Publication types

  • Review