Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Flaxseed-rich diet blocks prostate cancer growth and development in mice

11.11.2002


A diet rich in flaxseed seems to reduce the size, aggressiveness and severity of tumors in mice that have been genetically engineered to develop prostate cancer, according to new research from Duke University Medical Center. And in 3 percent of the mice, the flaxseed diet kept them from getting the disease at all.



“We are cautiously optimistic about these findings,” said Wendy Demark-Wahnefried, Ph.D., associate professor, division of urology and senior author of the study that appears in the November 2002 issue of the journal Urology. “The amount of flaxseed given to each mouse was 5 percent of its total food intake, which would be a very difficult amount for humans to eat, but it does signal that we are on the right track and need to continue research in this area.”

According to Demark-Wahnefried, planned clinical trials must be completed before it can be concluded that dietary flaxseed is a useful protective against prostate cancer in humans.


The research was sponsored by the National Institute on Aging, the National Cancer Institute and the Committee for Urologic Research Education and Development at Duke University Medical Center.

Clinical studies by other researchers have suggested that dietary fiber reduces cancer risk, and omega-3 fatty acids also have shown a protective benefit against cancer. Flaxseed is the richest plant source of omega-3 fatty acids and is high in fiber. Also, flaxseed is a source of lignan, a specific family of fiber-related compounds that appear to play a role in influencing both estrogen and testosterone metabolism. Since testosterone may be important in the progression of prostate cancer, lignan could help inhibit the growth and development of the disease.

In the Duke study, 135 mice genetically engineered to develop prostate cancer were divided into a control group and an experimental group. The experimental group received a regular mouse diet, but 5 percent of the diet was in the form of flaxseed. Half of the mice in both groups were fed their respective diets for 20 weeks and the remainder for 30 weeks. At the 20- and 30-week end points, the mice were autopsied to check for tumor growth and progression of the disease to other organs.

“Tumors in the untreated control group were twice the size of tumors in the flaxseed group,” said Xu Lin, M.D., research associate, division of urology and lead author of the study. “The tumors were also less aggressive in the flaxseed group, and two of the mice in the flaxseed group did not develop prostate cancer at all. The rates of apoptosis (tumor cell death) were also higher in the flaxseed group. And while it was not statistically significant, the flaxseed group had fewer rates of the cancer spreading to other organs. ”

While the results are promising, the researchers say they are not surprising. The study is the third in a series by the Duke Medical Center researchers to show the benefits of flaxseed in reducing the growth and development of prostate cancer.

The first study, published in July 2001 in Urology, demonstrated that a low-fat diet supplemented with flaxseed was associated with slower tumor growth. In this pilot study, 25 men with prostate cancer began adding ground flaxseed to their diets for 34 days. At the end of the study, the men saw a drop in testosterone levels and a trend toward lower prostate specific antigen (PSA) levels, a marker for prostate cancer. The diet also was tolerated well and gave the authors hope for this dietary intervention.

The second study, published in the November-December 2001 issue of Anticancer Research, examined the effect lignans have on prostate cancer cell lines. This study showed that flaxseed-derived lignans inhibited the growth of three distinct human prostate cancer cell lines through hormonally dependent and independent mechanisms.

“So far we have observed the suppression of prostate cancer in humans, mice and at the cellular level,” said Lin. “It’s not a fluke or a coincidence. It’s an encouraging line of research.”

Demark-Wahnefried adds, "Our results are encouraging. However, before we can truly state that flaxseed is beneficial in humans, larger well-controlled trials are needed. The National Cancer Institute has provided us with the support to conduct a randomized clinical trial in 160 men with prostate cancer that will examine whether a low-fat diet, flaxseed supplementation or a combination of low-fat diet and flaxseed supplementation will be most effective in stopping prostate cancer cells from dividing. That trial is currently under way.”

contact sources :
Wendy Demark-Wahnefried Ph.D. , (919) 681-3261
demar001@mc.duke.edu

Amy Austell | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://dukemednews.org/news/article.php?id=6041

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht NIST scientists discover how to switch liver cancer cell growth from 2-D to 3-D structures
17.11.2017 | National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

nachricht High speed video recording precisely measures blood cell velocity
15.11.2017 | ITMO University

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

Im Focus: Researchers Develop Data Bus for Quantum Computer

The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.

Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...

Im Focus: Wrinkles give heat a jolt in pillared graphene

Rice University researchers test 3-D carbon nanostructures' thermal transport abilities

Pillared graphene would transfer heat better if the theoretical material had a few asymmetric junctions that caused wrinkles, according to Rice University...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA detects solar flare pulses at Sun and Earth

17.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

NIST scientists discover how to switch liver cancer cell growth from 2-D to 3-D structures

17.11.2017 | Health and Medicine

The importance of biodiversity in forests could increase due to climate change

17.11.2017 | Studies and Analyses

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>