Polypharmacology of andrographolide: beyond one molecule one target
Covering: 1951 to 2020
Andrographolide is one of the most widely studied plant secondary metabolites, known to display diverse pharmacological actions. Current literature has documented a sizeable list of pharmacological targets for andrographolide, suggesting its multi-targeting nature. Many of these targets are central to the pathophysiology of highly prevalent diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, neurodegenerative disorders, autoimmunity, and even cancer. Despite its well-documented therapeutic efficacy in various disease models, for years, the discrepancies between in vivo bioavailability and bioactivity of andrographolide and the debate surrounding its multi-targeting properties (polypharmacology or promiscuity?) have hindered the development of this versatile molecule into a potential therapeutic agent. Is andrographolide a valuable lead for therapeutic development or a potential invalid metabolic panacea (IMP)? This perspective article aims to discuss this by considering various contributing factors to the polypharmacology of andrographolide.