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Showing posts from November, 2012

Resveratrol, wine, and cancer: an update

A recent study on the effects of resveratrol on prostate cancer highlights one of the tantalizing aspects of this red wine antioxidant: a long list of potential anti-cancer properties. It must be pointed out however that nearly all of the evidence for this comes from laboratory research, and though there are some clinical trials in progress it is premature to claim anti-cancer benefits for resveratrol supplements. But if any of it pans out it could lead to significant breakthroughs.
One of the things that make resveratrol so intriguing as an anti-cancer agent is that it not only suppresses cancer cell growth but seems to protect normal cells from the toxic effects of cancer treatment. Radiation treatment is a particularly troublesome therapy because of lasting effects on healthy cells in the treatment zone. But several lines of evidence suggest that resveratrol may pull off the ultimate hat trick: protecting the healthy cells while sensitizing cancerous cells to radiation.
This most r…