Common plant substance fights cancers

22nd February 2005, Comments 0 comments

22 February 2005, HAMBURG - German cancer scientists have shown how a common plant substance used by some herbalists can slow the growth of tumours, and discovered that a range of other plants contain the same natural drug. Herbal therapists often advocate the use of polyphenols such as ECG and EGCG, found in green tea, or hypericin in St. John's wort, to prevent or fight cancer, but some explanations of how polyphenols work have been off-target. A team lead by Georg Meyr at Hamburg Eppendorf University Ho

22 February 2005

HAMBURG - German cancer scientists have shown how a common plant substance used by some herbalists can slow the growth of tumours, and discovered that a range of other plants contain the same natural drug.

Herbal therapists often advocate the use of polyphenols such as ECG and EGCG, found in green tea, or hypericin in St. John's wort, to prevent or fight cancer, but some explanations of how polyphenols work have been off-target.

A team lead by Georg Meyr at Hamburg Eppendorf University Hospital said they will publish a study in the Journal of Biological Chemistry showing even tiny concentrations of polyphenols suppress cell enyzmes necessary to create "signal" molecules that set off cell growth.

Other common polypheneol treatments include chlorogen acid from willow bark and quercetin found in apples, onions and black tea.

The group said it had tried polyphenols on leukaemia, lung-cancer and breast-cancer cells and noted that other polyphenols ignored so far have the same properties.

DPA

Subject: German news

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