Cancer incidence is much lower in India than in western countries. The reason is not fully understood, but the high spice consumption could be one of the contributing factors. Anise is one of the plants grows in India and people from our region believe that anise seeds are helpful in cancer prevention and treatment. In this study, anticancer activity of ethanol extract of anise (Pimpinella anisum L.) seed was investigated. MTT and LDH assays revealed that ethanolic extract have cytotoxic activity on human prostate cancer cell line [PC-3] at concentrations found safe to normal cells (rat skeletal muscle cell line [L6]). Treatment with anise seeds extract caused anti proliferative and apoptotic effects, with IC50 value
of 400 µg/mL to cancer cells. Thus, anise could be one of the foods that attribute to cancer prevention and treatment. It could also be a natural source of novel anticancer compounds with anti proliferative and/or apoptotic properties and it is worth to work on for isolation and identification of novel anticancer drug candidates.