Commercial production of milkweed a plant with anticancer properties




New and Emerging Plant Industries

Research Organisation

OLD ABN-The State Of Queensland Acting Through The Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation

Objective Summary

Milkweed (Euphorbia peplus) has bioactives known as PEP compounds and these are suitable for use in treating various cancers particularly skin cancer. This research will build on the system for commercially growing of E. peplus which was developed asa result of previous projects funded by RIRDC. Cost effective production techniques will be enhanced to enable producers to meet market needs and enable the even and reliable production of PEP compounds all year round for a larger market. Efficient production systems for both intensive cropping in artificial structures and less intensive broadacre field production will be developed. Research to date was focused on production of material for clinical trials. This research will result in the developmentof intensive production techniques for commercial scale production and extraction. The growing sector which will benefit from this research would be small holdings and holdings with some covered or protected areas such as shade or plastic tunnel. The growing E. peplus would aso be attractive to organic growers.

Project Code


Project Stage


Project Start Date

Friday, July 1, 2005

Project Completion Date

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Journal Articles From Project

Not Available

National Priority

Promoting and maintaining good health

National Priority

Soil, water and managing natural resources

National Priority

NEPI-Industry building and connectivity