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Studies show preventive value of food supplements

"We are finding that, in this case, the therapeutic value of natural herbs is presenting itself as clinically valid," said Brian Wong, Ph.D., of Union College, and lead author of the study.

"As we further study Scutellaria barbata, we hope to find the same benefits against prostate cancer in human models," he added. In the study, researchers determined the extent of apoptosis (cell death) and necrosis (tissue death), as well as palpable tumor formation. Results of culturing the cancer cells with SB for two hours suggested that two hours is the optimal incubation time for SB to induce apoptosis in TRAMP-C1 cells.

Mice were fed daily in random groups, either receiving sterile water as placebo or experimental doses of 8 milligrams and 16 milligrams of sterile SB aqueous extracts. In the placebo group, palpable tumors developed at 19 weeks of age, and by 32 weeks, all of the mice had palpable tumors. By comparison, 20 percent and 30 percent of the mice in the 8 mg and 16 mg SB groups, respectively, were free of tumors. At 27 weeks, fewer than 30 percent of the placebo animals were free of palpable tumors; in the low- and high-dose groups, there were 50 percent and 70 percent of the mice were tumor-free.

The data demonstrates that SB contains phytochemicals that modulate apoptosis of the TRAMP mouse prostate cancer cells in vitro (in an artificial environment), and delay tumor development in vivo (in the living body). The most recent research data demonstrated that SB has a similar effect in the induction of apoptosis in a human prostate cancer cell line, LNCaP (lymph node carcinoma of the prostate), and also modulates the PARP (Poly ADP-Ribose Polymerase, an enzyme required for the detection of DNA strand interruptions) of the same cell line.


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Contact: Aimee Frank
amf@spectrumscience.com
202-955-6222
American Association for Cancer Research
28-Oct-2003


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