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Life Extension Magazine

LE Magazine August 2010
In The News

EGCG Suppresses Lung Cancer Cell Growth

A recent study done by the Hormel Institute at the University of Minnesota, in Austin, indicates that green tea may help stop lung cancer growth.* The study, which focused on epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), a polyphenol compound in the catechin family that is highly concentrated in green tea, set out to examine reports that EGCG suppresses lung cancer.

The study’s researchers found that EGCG interacted with the Ras-GTPase-activing protein SH3 domain-binding protein 1 (G3BP1). They also showed that EGCG suppressed the independent growth of H1299 and CL13 lung cancer cells, which contain a large amount of G3BP1 protein.

Additional results showed that EGCG effectively attenuated G3BP1 downstream signaling, including extracellular signal-regulated kinase and mitogen-activated protein kinase/extracellular signaling-regulated kinase.

The researchers concluded that green tea, which is one of the most popular beverages in the world, may in fact be a potent cancer fighter. The studies strongly indicated that green tea, via its EGCG content, suppresses lung tumorigenesis through its binding with G3BP1.

Editor’s note: Life Extension has advocated the use of green tea as a powerful antioxidant for years. This study is yet another confirmation that supplementing with green tea extract can be highly beneficial to the body.

—Jon Finkel

Reference

* Cancer Prev Res (Phila Pa). 2010 May;3(5):670-9.

Broccoli Compound Targets Breast Cancer Stem Cells

Broccoli Compound Targets Breast Cancer Stem Cells

In research conducted at the University of Michigan, a compound known as sulforaphane, found in broccoli and broccoli sprouts, was demonstrated to target cancer stem cells in cell cultures and in mice. Cancer stem cells, which are not destroyed by chemotherapy, are believed to be involved in the ability of breast cancer to recur, grow, and spread.*

Duxin Sun, PhD and colleagues injected varying concentrations of sulforaphane derived from broccoli extract into mice implanted with human breast cancer tumors. Examination of the animals’ tumors uncovered a substantial reduction in cancer stem cells, while normal cells did not appear to be significantly affected. Additionally, cancer cells derived from animals that received sulforaphane that were re-implanted into other mice failed to form tumors.

“Sulforaphane has been studied previously for its effects on cancer, but this study shows that its benefit is in inhibiting the breast cancer stem cells,” Dr. Sun stated.

Editor’s note: The concentrations of sulforaphane tested in the study were higher than those provided by normal consumption of broccoli or its sprouts.

—Dayna Dye

Reference

* Clin Cancer Res. 2010 May 1.

Transdermal Menopausal Hormones May Be Most Effective

Transdermal Menopausal Hormones May Be Most Effective

Until recently, estrogens and androgens were commonly administered orally to patients to improve quality of life for postemenopausal women; however, transdermal hormone therapy is beginning to replace it.* With this cutting-edge delivery system, estrogen and testosterone are dosed into the microvascular circulation directly through the skin; this avoids a first-pass hepatic transformation or deactivation of the dosed estrogen or testosterone.

In this review, done by the Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, Women and Infants Hospital, scientists examined recent clinical trials involving transdermal estrogen and testosterone in postmenopausal women.

The scientists concluded that transdermal estrogen and testosterone, when administered to the proper patients, significantly and safely enhances the quality of life. These advantages may lead to increased usage and wider popularity of this delivery system.

—Jon Finkel

Reference

* Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2010 Apr 28..

Obesity Linked to Increased Availability of Unhealthy Foods

Obesity Linked to Increased Availability of Unhealthy Foods

The alarming trend of increased childhood obesity seems to be linked to increased intake of unhealthy foods rather than decreased energy expenditure, according to a report from Neal Barnard, president of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.*

Dr. Barnard analyzed food availability data maintained from 1909 to 2007. Dr. Barnard found that during that time period, per capita food availability increased as follows:

  • Oils increased from 35 to 87 pounds per person per year
  • Meat increased from 124 to 200 pounds per person per year
  • Cheese increased from 4 to 33 pounds per person per year
  • Frozen dairy products increased from 1.5 to 25 pounds per person per year

Furthermore, from 1970 to 2007, per capita availability of sweeteners increased from 119 to 136 pounds per person per year. This rise in availability of caloric sweeteners reflects a decline in beet and cane sugar and an increase in high-fructose corn syrup. Part of this may be related to the sharp increase in the availability of carbonated beverages, which increased by 57 liters (15 gallons) per person per year when comparing 2007 data to 1980 data.

“Many people have been trying to understand what has caused the obesity epidemic,” Dr. Barnard told Life Extension. “Our analysis of USDA figures shows that the big increases over the last century have been in the amount of meat, cheese, oil, and frozen desserts that people are consuming. While people tend to blame a lack of exercise, it appears that meaty, cheesy diets are largely to blame.”

—Marc Ellman, MD

Reference

* Am J Clin Nutr. 2010 Mar 24.