The Tree of Life plant Moringa Oleifera Kills 97% of Pancreatic Cancer Cells in Vitro

We just discovered an amazing report about Moringa, courtesy of our friends over at The Eden Prescription. In 2013 scientists reported in a paper published in BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine (A peer-reviewed, open access journal) that A hot-water extract of the leaves of Moringa Oleifera killed up to 97% of human pancreatic cancer cells (Panc-1) after 72 hours in lab tests. Moringa leaf extract inhibited the growth of all pancreatic cell lines tested. [1]

Pancreatic cancer is very serious, one of the worst. Fewer than 6% patients with adenocarcinoma of the pancreas live five years after diagnosis. The typical treatment is currently chemotherapy.

Called the “miracle tree” on account of its many virtues, Moringa is very well known in India, parts of Africa, the Philippines and several other countries, yet it is relatively unknown in countries such as the USA. However it seems from the current buzz around it that it may well soon experience a rise to new popularity. It has a long history of use in traditional medicine due to its properties as an anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, antidepressant, anti-diabetes, pain and fever reducer and even asthma treatment. We’ve dedicated a full page on our site to a detailed herbal report on the amazing Moringa and those interested in herbalism would do well to investigate this plant.

It also contains numerous powerful anti-cancer compounds such as kaempferol, rhamnetin and isoquercetin. Now, researchers are discovering that Moringa has anti-cancer potential with positive results so far against ovarian cancer, liver cancer, lung cancer, and melanoma in lab tests. A list of these studies can be seen on Pubmed here.

Please note that it’s a long way before Moringa can be claimed as a cancer cure, but this kind of study is important because it indicates the potential for a starting point for a medicine of the future. It’s especially interesting because Moringa is already in common use – not only in herbalism but in a wide variety of other applications.

Moringa is now extensively cultivated throughout Asia, Africa, the Caribbean and Central America, but the largest Moringa crop in the world is produced by India – where it grows natively. It’s fascinating to note that may be one reason why the death rate from pancreatic cancer in India is a stunning 84% lower than in the United States!

**Moringa plants,material & seeds are available HERE.

Note – This article is not medical advice nor a substitute for consultation with a medical professional.

Note 2 – “In Vitro” literally means “In Glassware” and is the Latin expression to denote that the tests were done on cell cultures in a lab, as opposed to “In Vivo” which means tested on living creatures. Such studies indicate preliminary success but much more research will be needed to “prove” efficacy in humans. Though the huge disparity in pancreatic cancer rates in India is highly encouraging.

Check out our full “herbal page” on Moringa – tons of detailed information for those wishing to study this plant in depth:

Please check out The Eden Prescription for more reports on the cutting edge science being done investigating the medicinal properties of herbs!



Moringa oleifera and the hot water infusions derived from its flowers, roots, leaves, seeds, and bark were also determined to possess antispasmodic, diuretic, and anti-inflammatory activities. In particular, the seed infusion appears to suppress the contraction induced by acetylcholine in this study (ED50 of 65.6 mg/mL) and the edema stimulated by carrageenan at 1000 mg/kg. Diuretic activity was noted at a concentration of 1000 mg/kg. Some of these cited biological properties were also noted in the roots. [24]

Moringa – Active Compounds

One thing that Moringa truly and clearly has under its belt is its being a rich and good source – not to mention affordable and readily accessible – of vital minerals and vitamins, protein, β-carotene, amino acids, and various phenolics. Zeatin, quercetin, β-sitosterol, caffeoylquinic acid, and kaempferol can also be isolated from Moringa. [25] Upon a comprehensive analysis of Moringa glucosinolates and phenolics (including flavonoids, anthocyanins, proanthocyanidins, and cinnamates), Bennett et al. (2003) found that:

The seeds contain 4-(α-l-rhamnopyranosyloxy)-benzylglucosinolate at high concentrations.

The roots have high concentrations of 4-(α-l-rhamnopyranosyloxy)-benzylglucosinolate and benzyl glucosinolate.

The leaves contain 4-(α-l-rhamnopyranosyloxy)-benzylglucosinolate and three monoacetyl isomers of this glucosinolate; quercetin-3-O-glucoside and quercetin-3-O-(6′ ‘-malonyl-glucoside); kaempferol-3-O-glucoside and kaempferol-3-O-(6’ ‘-malonyl-glucoside) in lower amounts; and 3-caffeoylquinic acid and 5-caffeoylquinic acid.

The bark contains 4-(α-l-rhamnopyranosyloxy)-benzylglucosinolate. [24]

Names of Moringa, past and present

English: Moringa, Horseradish Tree, Tree Of Life, Moringa Tree of Paradise, Moringa the Never Die Tree, Drumstick Tree, Ben Oil Tree, Ben Tree
Latin (scientific nomenclature): Moringa oleifera, Moringa pterygosperma, Hyperanthera moringa (archaic)
Tamil: Murungai / Murungai Maram
Mandarin: la mu
Cantonese: lat mok (lit. ‘spicy wood’)
Filipino: malunggay / kamungay
Hindi / Indian: munaga / shajna
Spanish: palo de aceite / libertad
French: ben olifiere
Ayurvedic: Shigru / Shobhanjana
Hindi: Sahjan
Punjabi: Surajan
Konkani: Mhasanga Saang
Telugu: Munagachettu

Morniga – General Information

Moringa is a genus of 13 species of tropical and subtropical plants. The most widely known of these, and the subject of this article, is Moringa oleifera – a tree native to northwestern India. Moringa oleifera, commonly referred to as just “Moringa”, grows fast in a variety of climates and is cultivated in many regions because it can grow in poor or even some barren soils. Much of the plant is edible. The leaves are nutritious and are used as food for people and feed for livestock. [1]

The moringa tree is often referred to by its advocates as the ‘tree of life’ due to its seemingly miraculous nutritional benefits and sheer versatility. This unassuming, curiously shaped tree is grown as a landscape tree and food source in many parts of the world – although its use as a type of vegetable and nutritive food first developed in countries such as Africa, the Himalayas, China, Malaysia, Thailand, and the Philippines. This hardy plant grows in a wide variety of soils ranging from sandy, loamy, and even clayish soils and is resistant to drought and is fast-growing. Due to its hardiness, moringa can be found growing in different climates, and with its adaptability (with the exception that it does not tolerate frost very well), the trees are easily grown and cultivated with very little to no maintenance required. [2]

The moringa tree, when left to its own devices, usually grows as much as ten metres, although when cultivated for its leaves, seed pods (aka ‘drumsticks’), seeds, or flowers it is usually trimmed and maintained at an easily reachable length of one to three metres tall to allow for easier harvesting of its constituent parts.

Proponents of Moringa oleifera sing its praises. It has been described as “one of the most useful plants that exists” – owing to its unusual combination of high nutritional value, medicinal properties, fast growing and ability to thrive in arid environments. The leaves are rich in vitamins, proteins and minerals such as calcium, potassium and iron.

One of the reasons the Moringa tree can thrive in arid regions is that it has a long taproot – which also makes it valuable against soil erosion. [3] The main products made from the plant are edible seed oil, tea leaves and animal feed. The seed kernels are also used by the French perfume manufacturing industry. [4] The Moringa tree is now widely cultivated in Africa, Sri Lanka, India, Central and South America, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines. The tree is in full leaf at the end of the dry season when other food may be scarce. [5]

Moringa oleifera is listed in the AHPA’s “Herbs of Commerce”, p98. [6]


References & Further Reading






[6] “Herbs of Commerce” (AHPA) (2000 edition) – Michael McGuffin, John T. Kartesz, Albert Y Leung, Arthur O. Tucker p.98











[17] saturday-magazine&Itemid=566

[18] (p.123)


[20] Anwar F., Latif S., Ashraf M., & Gilani A. H. (2007). Moringa oleifera: a food plant with multiple medicinal uses. Phytotherapy Research, 21(1): 17–25. Retrieved 23 March 2013 from

[21] Mbikay M. (2012). Therapeutic potential of Moringa oleifera leaves in chronic hyperglycemia and dyslipidemia: A review. Frontiers in Pharmacology, 3:24. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2012.00024. Retrieved 23 March 2013 from

[22] Ndong M., Uehara M., Katsumata S., & Suzuki K. (2007). Effects of oral administration of Moringa oleifera Lam on glucose tolerance in Goto-Kakizaki and Wistar rats. Journal of Clinical Biochemistry and Nutrition, 40(3): 229–233. doi: 10.3164/jcbn.40.229. Retrieved 23 March 2013 from

[23] Jaiswal D., Kumar Rai P., Kumar A., Mehta S., & Watal G. (2009).Effect of Moringa oleifera Lam. leaves aqueous extract therapy on hyperglycemic rats. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 123(3): 392–396. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2009.03.036. Retrieved 23 March 2013 from

[24] Cáceres A., Saravia A., Rizzo S., Zabala L., De Leon E., & Nave F. (1992).Pharmacologic properties of Moringa oleifera. 2: Screening for antispasmodic, antiinflammatory and diuretic activity. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 36(3): 233–237. Retrieved 23 March 2013 from

[25] Bennett R. N. et al. (2003).Profiling glucosinolates and phenolics in vegetative and reproductive tissues of the multi-purpose trees Moringa oleifera L. (horseradish tree) and Moringa stenopetala L. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 51(12): 3546–3553. Retrieved 23 March 2013 from



Henry Sapiecha

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