Scientists at the University of Missouri have uncovered that herbs and vegetables contain a natural compound that may help to improve treatments for triple-negative breast cancer.
The scientists found that the compound, called luteolin, may reduce the risk of developing metastasis - the development of secondary malignant growths at a distance from the primary site of cancer. Their early tests showed that this plant-based substance can successfully suppress metastasis inn a mouse model. Here's the full scoop on their findings…
Triple-negative breast cancer is a particularly aggressive form of breast cancer…
Triple-negative breast cancer
is a particularly aggressive form of breast cancer
and accounts for 15% to 20% of all breast cancer cases. This form of breast cancer usually metastasizes to distant sites in the body, which makes it very difficult to treat.
What triple-negative breast cancer essentially means is that the most common types of receptors known to fuel most breast cancer growth – oestrogen, progesterone and the HER-2/neu gene – aren’t present in the cancer tumour
. Because the tumour
cells lack these necessary receptors, common treatments such as hormone therapy and drugs that target oestrogen, progesterone and HER-2 are ineffective.
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“Because of this lack of receptors, common cancer drugs can’t ‘find’ the cells, and doctors must treat the cancer with extremely aggressive and highly toxic treatment strategies,” Salman Hyder, the Zalk Endowed Professor in Tumor Angiogenesis and professor of biomedical sciences in the College of Veterinary Medicine and the Dalton Cardiovascular Research Center, explained.
“Women with this type of breast cancer also frequently develop metastatic lesions that originate from drug-resistant cells. Therefore, safer therapeutic therapies that are more effective are being sought for this deadly type of cancer in women,” Hyder added.
Scientists discover that the natural compound luteolin improves triple-negative breast cancer treatment
In their study, scientists found that mice exposed to triple-negative breast cancer cells experienced significantly reduced metastatic growth in their lungs after they treated them with luteolin, said Hyder.
Furthermore, in almost every case, the mice saw no weight loss
, which means luteolin has no toxic effects and is both safe and effective. Top herb and vegetable sources of this breast cancer-fighting compound include celery, broccoli, green pepper, parsley, thyme, dandelion, perilla, chamomile tea, carrots, olive oil, peppermint, rosemary, navel oranges and oregano.