The Spicy, Active Ingredient in Chilies Found to Kill Off Cancer Cells
- The Spicy, Active Ingredient in Chilies Found to Kill Off Cancer Cells
by Amy Goodrich, http://www.naturalnews.com/
(NaturalNews) A burning, hot sensation in your mouth isn’t the only trick chili peppers have up their sleeve. Rather than spicing up your food, German researchers found that capsaicin, or the active, hot compound in chili peppers, could stop breast cancer in its tracks.
Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women worldwide, affecting about one in eight American women. Scientists have classified breast cancer according to the presence or absence of three receptors that are known to promote breast cancer proliferation. The receptors are estrogen, progesterone, and the epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2).
While breast cancers that test positive for HER2 typically respond well to available treatments, others that test negative for all three receptors (also called triple-negative breast cancer) are harder to treat, with damaging chemotherapy being the only available treatment option.
The German research team led by Ruhr-University Bochum’s Dr. Habil Hanns Hatt and Dr. Lea Weber, however, found that capsaicin may offer new hope in the treatment of this particularly aggressive cancer type. (RELATED: Learn more about health-enhancing foods at FRESH.news)
Spicy molecule causing cancer cells to self-destruct
For their study, the team analyzed the effect of capsaicin on SUM149PT cell cultures, which are a model system for the aggressive triple-negative breast cancer type. Previous research suggested that several transient receptor potential (TRP) channels influence cancer cell growth. These TRP channels are membranes that control how much calcium and sodium goes in and out the cancer cell.
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