Pomegranate Could Fight Cancer

September 24, 2007
Pomegranate Could Fight Cancer
Juice from the pomegranate shows promise for fighting prostate cancer. Credit: USDA Agricultural Research Service

Researchers in California are reporting new evidence explaining pomegranate juice’s mysterious beneficial effects in fighting prostate cancer. In a study scheduled for the Sept. 19 issue of ACS’ Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, a bi-weekly publication, Navindra Seeram and colleagues have found that the tart, trendy beverage also uses a search-and-destroy strategy to target prostate cancer cells.

In previous research, Seeram’s group found that pomegranate juice consumption had a beneficial effect for prostate cancer patients with rising prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels. Such increases in PSA signal that the cancer is progressing, “doubling time” a key indicator of prognosis. Men whose PSA levels double in a short period are more likely to die from their cancer. Pomegranate juice increased doubling times by almost fourfold.

In the new study, they researchers discovered evidence in laboratory experiments that pomegranate works in a “seek and destroy” fashion. On consumption, ellagitannins (ET), antioxidants abundant in pomegranate juice, break down to metabolites known as urolithins. The researchers showed that the urolithins concentrate at high levels in prostate tissue after being given orally and by injection to mice with prostate cancer. They also showed that urolithins inhibited the growth of human prostate cancer cells in cell culture.

“The chemopreventive potential of pomegranate ellagitannins and localization of their bioactive metabolites in mouse prostate tissue suggest that pomegranate may play a role in prostate cancer treatment and chemoprevention,” the researchers state, recommending further clinical studies with pomegranate and prostate cancer patients.

Source: ACS

Explore further: Scientists identify pomegranate juice components that could stop cancer from spreading

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Innovations from the wild world of optics and photonics

August 2, 2015

Traditional computers manipulate electrons to turn our keystrokes and Google searches into meaningful actions. But as components of the computer processor shrink to only a few atoms across, those same electrons become unpredictable ...

Shedding light on millipede evolution

August 2, 2015

As an National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded entomologist, Virginia Tech's Paul Marek has to spend much of his time in the field, hunting for rare and scientifically significant species. He's provided NSF with an inside ...

Better together: graphene-nanotube hybrid switches

August 2, 2015

Graphene has been called a wonder material, capable of performing great and unusual material acrobatics. Boron nitride nanotubes are no slackers in the materials realm either, and can be engineered for physical and biological ...

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Yes
not rated yet Apr 27, 2009
The chemopreventive potential of pomegranate ellagitannins and localization of their bioactive metabolites in mouse prostate tissue suggest that pomegranate may play a role in prostate cancer treatment




Science is difficult, while they use the word suggest.



they should have a control group with people taking only vitamin C or a pomegranate equivalent vitamin complex to rule out its not the vitamin. Then have a couple of control groups that take in orange juice, pineapple juice and cranberry juice to rule out it is not just a healthy diet change.

And of course the control group that takes only their medicine.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.