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“Wild berry adds a ‘supra-additive’ effect to conventional chemotherapy,” says study

Posted:  Monday, September 29, 2014

Pancreatic cancer is a serious form of cancer with poor prognosis. Less than 5% of patients survive up to 5 years post diagnosis. However, a recent study brought good news regarding pancreatic cancer treatment. The study has found that the extract of a wild berry may help boost the efficacy of the chemotherapeutic drug, which is used to induce apoptosis in pancreatic cancer cells.

According to the researchers, treatment of a cultured pancreatic cell line with chokeberry extract alone or in combination with a conventional chemotherapeutic agent led to induction of cell death or apoptosis. The results of the study were published in The Journal of Clinical Pathology.

The scientists cultured AsPC-1 line of pancreatic cancer cells in vitro and assessed their growth when treated either with chemotherapy drug gemcitabine or different levels of commercial chokeberry extract alone and the combination of both. They found that a 48-h infusion of gemcitabine 1 ug/mL induced apoptosis and low doses of the wild berry extract seemed to augment the effectiveness of gemcitabine. Owing to this effect, low doses of the chemotherapeutic agent were required for the treatment.

A native of North America, chokeberry is high in vitamins and antioxidant polyphenol compounds. When treated together, the compounds in the berry and the drug acted synergistically to cause cancer cell apoptosis.

“More specifically, the study suggests that elements in chokeberry extract, while not intrinsically toxic, can have supra-additive effects in combination with at least one other conventional cytotoxic drug,” said the researchers.

Encouraging results of the present study could pave way for future clinical research to explore the role of naturally occurring plant micronutrients as an adjunct to conventional cancer treatments. Numerous other plant sources are rich in polyphenols namely green tea, soyabeans, turmeric etc. It is the need of the hour to examine the beneficial effect exercised by these ‘nutraceuticals’ in the treatment of intractable cancers like pancreatic cancer.

For study details:-Click Here!