Saturday, 23 November 2013

Phytochemicals and Pancreatic Cancer (Exocrine Cancers)

Pancreas is an oblong flattened gland in the digestive and endocrine system located in the abdomen. By secreting pancreatic juice to the small intestine, pancreas helps to break down carbohydrates, proteins, and lipids. Traditional Chinese medicine view pancreas as a vital organ in responsible for the absorption of foods' qi and nutrients before passing them to other organs to nourish our body.

Cancer of pancreas or pancreatic cancer
is defined as condition of
a malignant neoplasm of the pancreas, as the cells have become cancerous and divided uncontrollably. Most pancreatic cancers start in the ducts (exocrine component of the pancreas) that carry pancreatic juices with cancer of an epithelium that originates in glandular tissue accounts for over 75 - 90% of all cases of exocrine cancers.

Types of food to prevent and treat pancreatic cancer 
1. Pomegranate
Pomegranate extract (PE) is a standardized whole-fruit extract of pomegranate, a fruit with known anticancer properties, Dr. Nair V, and the research team at the University of Texas at Austin, in the study ofPomegranate extract induces cell cycle arrest and alters cellular phenotype of human pancreatic cancer cells, showed that PE treatment induced cell cycle arrest and inhibited cell proliferation in PANC-1 cells. PE treatment increased the proportion of cells lacking CD44 and CD24 expression, which are associated with increased tumor-initiating ability, demonstrating that PE altered cell phenotype. PE was more effective in inhibiting the proliferation of PANC-1 cells than the clinically used dose of paclitaxel. Similar results were obtained in the AsPC-1 cell line. Individual pomegranate phytochemicals were only modestly effective in inhibiting cell proliferation(1).

2. Curcumin, raspberry and neem leaf
the study of Impact of curcumin, raspberry extract, and neem leaf extract on rel protein-regulated cell death/radiosensitization in pancreatic cancer cells showed that CUR, NLE, and RSE may serve as effective "deliverables" to potentiate RT in PC cure and further throw light that these phytochemicals-induced cell killing may involve selective regulation of RT-induced NF-κB(2).

3. Tomato
Lycotene is a phytochemical compound and bright red pigment belonging to group of carotene in the family of carotenoids found mostly in tomatoes. In the study to investigate the possible association between dietary carotenoids and pancreatic cancer risk. A case-control study of 462 histologically confirmed pancreatic cancer cases and 4721 population-based controls in 8 Canadian provinces took place between 1994 and 1997, showed that After adjustment for age, province, BMI, smoking, educational attainment, dietary folate, and total energy intake, lycopene, provided mainly by tomatoes, was associated with a 31% reduction in pancreatic cancer risk among men [odds ratio (OR) = 0.69; 95% CI: 0.46-0.96; P = 0.026 for trend] when comparing the highest and lowest quartiles of intake. Both beta-carotene (OR = 0.57; 95% CI: 0.32-0.99; P = 0.016 for trend) and total carotenoids (OR = 0.58; 95% CI: 0.34-1.00; P = 0.02 for trend) were associated with a significantly reduced risk among those who never smoked. The results of this study suggest that a diet rich in tomatoes and tomato-based products with high lycopene content may help reduce pancreatic cancer risk(3).

4.  Grapes and berries
Myricetin, a flavonol, belong to the flavonoid in Flavonoids (polyphenols), found in many grapes, berries, etc. has been used as antioxidant to lower cholesterol, treat certain types of cancer, etc. In the observation of the flavonoid myricetin and its effect on metastatic pancreatic cancer cell lines, found that myricetin resulted in tumor regression and decreased metastatic spread. Importantly, myricetin was non-toxic, both in vitro and in vivo, underscoring its use as a therapeutic agent against pancreatic cancer, according to the study of "Myricetin induces pancreatic cancer cell death via the induction of apoptosis and inhibition of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) signaling pathway" by Phillips PA, Sangwan V, Borja-Cacho D, Dudeja V, Vickers SM, Saluja AK.(4)

5. Etc.

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