Tags: Common | Herbs | May | Fight | Cancer

Common Herbs May Fight Cancer

Monday, 17 April 2006 12:00 AM

Two common herbs may one day be used as weapons in the war against cancer, according to resent research.

The studies show that ginger can kill ovarian cancer cells while the compound that makes peppers hot can shrink pancreatic tumors.

The study on ginger was done at the University of Michigan.

Dr. Rebecca Liu, an assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University's Comprehensive Cancer Center, tested ginger powder dissolved in solution by putting it on ovarian cancer cell cultures.

The solution killed cancer cells in two different ways.

It triggered both 'apoptosis,' a kind of cellular suicide, and 'autophagy,' is a kind of cellular self-digestion.

Most standard chemotherapy for ovarian cancer trigger cell death through apoptosis. The problem is that cancer cells become resistant to standard therapy. And that's why the ginger's effect of autophagy is so interesting.

"If ginger can cause autophagic cell death in addition to apoptosis, it may circumvent resistance to conventional chemotherapy," explained Dr. Liu.

She said the appeal of ginger was that it would have virtually no side-effects and would be easy to administer as a capsule.

The second study, done at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine found that capsaicin, the chemical that makes chili peppers hot, caused apoptosis death in the cells of pancreatic tumors in mice. "Capsaicin triggered the cancerous cells to die off and significantly reduced the size of the tumors," said Dr. Sanjay Srivastava, the lead researcher.

Both studies were presented at the recent meeting of the American Association of Cancer Research.

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Two common herbs may one day be used as weapons in the war against cancer, according to resent research. The studies show that ginger can kill ovarian cancer cells while the compound that makes peppers hot can shrink pancreatic tumors. The study on ginger was done at...
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2006-00-17
Monday, 17 April 2006 12:00 AM
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