Substances found in green tea and high fiber foods have been found highly effective in the treatment and prevention of pancreatic cancer, an extremely virulent form of disease with few effective treatments. Pancreatic cancer is the fourth leading cause of cancer death in the U.S., with a 5-year survival rate of less than 5%. Any indication of an effective preventive and treatment is very good news.
A diagnosis of pancreatic cancer generally comes only in its late stages since there are few noticeable symptoms during the early period of the disease. Patients diagnosed with pancreatic cancer survive an average of only 10 months following diagnosis. One of every 36 men will contract the disease in his lifetimes. For women, the incidence is one in every 195.
Green tea displays potent action against pancreatic cancer
In new research from the University of Kansas Medical Center, scientists have found that epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), an active catechin found in green tea, inhibits pancreatic cancer tumor growth through various mechanisms. These include its ability to stop tumors from setting up their own blood supply, through a process known as angiogenesis, and metastasis.
Scientists from several institutions in Europe have identified two other catechins from green tea, epicatechin gallate (ECG) and catechin gallate (CG) that exhibit potent anti-proliferative and anti-inflammatory activities on pancreatic cancer cells.
Researchers at Ohio State University studied the ability of EGCG to down regulate oncogenic proteins in pancreatic cancer cells. They found that EGCG induces degradation of cancer promoting proteins, resulting in anti-proliferation.
Other scientists from Ohio have identified the mechanisms by which EGCG induces growth arrest of pancreatic cancer cells at an early phase of the cell cycle.
Researchers at the University of Texas Science Center studied the effects of (EGCG) from green tea in a mouse model to examine the molecular mechanisms by which EGCG inhibits growth, invasion, metastasis and angiogenesis in grafted human pancreatic cancer cells. They concluded that EGCG significantly reduced volume, proliferation, angiogenesis and metastasis, and induced apoptosis (the appropriate planned death of cells) and growth arrest.
Both catechins, and inositol hexaphosphate (IP6), a compound found in high-fiber foods, have been shown to prevent the growth of cancer cells when administered as single therapeutic agents against a number of cancers. In research done at West Virginia University, researchers hypothesized that alone and in combination, catechin and IP6 would be effective against pancreatic cancer. After studying pancreatic cancer cell lines treated with catechin, IP6, and a combination of the two, they found that catehin and IP6 significantly inhibited the proliferation of cell growth compared to each administered separately. In another cell line, growth was inhibited by each agent alone compared to controls. An increase in apoptosis was attributed to catechin therapy in both cell lines, while the combination of these agents also increased early apoptotic activity. Vascular endothelial growth was reduced by IP6 in both cell lines compared to controls.
Specialized flavonoids are highly beneficial against disease
The catechins found in green tea are polyphenols belonging to the flavonoid family. They have also been shown to significantly reduce the risk of ovarian and colorectal cancer. Along with their cancer fighting abilities, catechins are highly antioxidant and have antibacterial, antiviral, and other health enhancing properties. EGCG is the most abundant and most studied catechin in green tea. It has been shown in tests to be able to penetrate the body’s cells and shield DNA. Significant amounts of catechins are also found in chocolate..
IP6 is a naturally occurring carbohydrate found in substantial amounts in whole grains, dried beans, nuts, seeds, rice, wheat germ and corn. It has been shown effective against a variety of cancers. In addition to the arresting of cell proliferation noted in the pancreatic cancer study, IP6 induces the differentiation of malignant cells. The more differentiated the malignant cells, the less aggressive and dangerous is the cancer. IP6 displays antioxidant and immunity enhancing properties which also contribute to tumor cell destruction.
Drinking two or three cups of green tea a day is the best way to provide the full range of its catechins. Supplements of whole leaf green tea are also available, as are extracts of ECGC. Supplemental IP6 is also available from health stores and online.
For more information:
Published with permission from AlignLife. Original article link is here.