Natural Compounds That Retard The Growth Of Prostate Cancer Cells
A latest research suggests that constituents found in apples, grapes and turmeric can effectively be used to treat and prevent one of the most frequently reported cancers in the US, i.e. prostate cancer. These natural compounds have been identified to have the ability to shrink the tumor and starve the malignant cells to achieve early remission.
Details Of The Study
The compounds found in apple peel, red grapes and turmeric have been researched to exhibit an intense influence on the cancerous cells especially when used in combination. The study was conducted by Stefano Tiziani, who works at the Dell Pediatric Research Institute and Department of Nutritional Sciences at the Texas University, Austin, and his other colleagues. The study was published in a journal called ‘Precision Oncology’.
Prostate cancer is the second most leading cancer type in the United States after skin cancer. Its prevalence has significantly increased over the past few decades.
The studies and researches conducted earlier claimed that there are several natural compounds that can be highly beneficial in combating and preventing prostate cancer. These natural compounds can be obtained from the foods derived from plant sources. Tiziani and other research team members set out to identify these compounds and their sources. They came up with an innovative screening technique which could be used for testing 142 naturally occurring compounds. The study focused on short listing and identifying the key compounds out of the selected 142 compounds, which would assist in retarding the multiplication of cancerous cells in prostate cancer.
Each compound was tested both in combination and individually on the human and mice derived cancerous cells of prostate cancer. The researchers successfully identified the 3 most effective compounds, out of the 142 selected compounds, that hindered the growth of cancerous cells.
- Curcumin: a yellow colored compound present in turmeric.
- Ursolic acid: a compound found in the peel of apple.
- Resveratrol: a compound found in berries and red grapes.
The effect of these compounds was then tested on prostate cancer models of rat. The team discovered that ursolic acid in combination with either resveratrol or curcumin significantly prevented the glutamine uptake by the cancerous cells which ultimately retarded the growth of prostate cancer in mice.
The amino acid glutamine is required by the cancerous cells. By glutamine uptake, the cancerous cells tend to grow rapidly however if the uptake of glutamine is inhibited then it starves the cancerous cells and retards their growth consequently promoting cell death in cancerous cells.
The most exciting part of the study was, these compounds (ursolic acid, resveratrol and curcumin), since they are natural, did not cause any toxicity or bring about any unwanted adverse effects. However, the effect produced by these compounds was achieved on a concentration that was much higher than that taken through the diet. Nevertheless, the researchers are hopeful due to the promising findings of the study and believe that these compounds can be used to fight off prostate cancer. The natural availability of the sources of these compounds makes this treatment approach applicable and cost effective. However more research work is needed to be done prior to concluding anything with certainty.
- Lall, R. K., Syed, D. N., Adhami, V. M., Khan, M. I., & Mukhtar, H. (2015). Dietary polyphenols in prevention and treatment of prostate cancer. International journal of molecular sciences, 16(2), 3350-3376.
- Liu, R. H. (2013). Health-promoting components of fruits and vegetables in the diet. Advances in Nutrition: An International Review Journal, 4(3), 384S-392S.