The Food Research Thread

Influenza virus variation in susceptibility to inactivation by pomegranate polyphenols is determined by envelope glycoproteins.
Sundararajan A, Ganapathy R, Huan L, Dunlap JR, Webby RJ, Kotwal GJ, Sangster MY.

Department of Microbiology, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996, USA.
Pomegranates have high levels of polyphenols (PPs) and may be a rich source of compounds with antiviral activity. We evaluated the direct anti-influenza activity of three commercially available pomegranate extracts: pomegranate juice (PJ), a concentrated liquid extract (POMxl), and a 93% PP powder extract (POMxp). The acidity of PJ and POMxl solutions contributed to rapid anti-influenza activity, but this was not a factor with POMxp. Studies using POMxp showed that 5min treatment at room temperature with 800μg/ml PPs resulted in at least a 3log reduction in the titers of influenza viruses PR8 (H1N1), X31 (H3N2), and a reassortant H5N1 virus derived from a human isolate. However, the antiviral activity was less against a coronavirus and reassortant H5N1 influenza viruses derived from avian isolates. The loss of influenza infectivity was frequently accompanied by loss of hemagglutinating activity. PP treatment decreased Ab binding to viral surface molecules, suggesting some coating of particles, but this did not always correlate with loss of infectivity. Electron microscopic analysis indicated that viral inactivation by PPs was primarily a consequence of virion structural damage. Our findings demonstrate that the direct anti-influenza activity of pomegranate PPs is substantially modulated by small changes in envelope glycoproteins.

Copyright 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
PMID: 20637243 [PubMed - in process]


Antifungal efficacy of Punica granatum, Acacia nilotica, Cuminum cyminum and Foeniculum vulgare on Candida albicans: an in vitro study.
Pai MB, Prashant GM, Murlikrishna KS, Shivakumar KM, Chandu GN.

Department of Community Dentistry, College of Dental Sciences, Davangere, Karnataka - 577 004, India.
BACKGROUND: The establishment and maintenance of oral microbiota is related not only to interbacterial coaggregations but also to interactions of these bacteria with yeasts. Hence, it is important for agents used in the treatment of oral diseases to have antifungal properties for effective therapy. Objective: The main purpose of this study was to evaluate the in vitro antifungal efficacy of Punica granatum, Acacia nilotica, Cuminum cyminum and Foeniculum vulgare on Candida albicans.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: The pomegranate peel is separated, dried and powdered. Fennel, cumin and acacia bark obtained from the tree are powdered. Candida is inoculated at 37˚C and seeded on Sabourauds agar medium. Sterilized filter papers saturated with 30 μl of the extracts are placed on the seeded plates and inoculated at 24 and 48 h. Zones of inhibition on all four sides are measured around the filter paper with a vernier caliper. The experiments were repeated on four plates, with four samples of each extract on one plate for all of the extracts.

RESULTS: All the above-mentioned ingredients showed antifungal property, with Punica granatum showing the highest inhibition of Candida albicans with a mean zone of inhibition of 22 mm. P-values <0.05 were obtained for Punica granatum when compared with the other extracts.

CONCLUSION: The results showed the potential use of these products as cheap and convenient adjuvants to pharmaceutical antifungal products.

PMID: 20930339 [PubMed - in process]Free Article

Extract of Punica granatum inhibits skin photoaging induced by UVB irradiation.
Park HM, Moon E, Kim AJ, Kim MH, Lee S, Lee JB, Park YK, Jung HS, Kim YB, Kim SY.

Department of Medical Science, Graduate School of East-West Medical Science, Kyung Hee University Global Campus, Giheung-Gu, Gyeonggi-Do, South Korea.
BACKGROUND: Punica granatum (pomegranate) is kind of a fruit consumed fresh or in beverage. It has been widely used in traditional medicine in various parts of the world. In this study, we examined the efficacy of a Punica granatum (PG) extract in protecting skin against UVB-induced damage using cultured human skin fibroblasts.

METHODS: A Korean red PG sample was used, and its effects classified according to if the PG source originated from the rind, seed and fruit. The polyphenol content of PG, which is known to prevent other adverse cutaneous effects of UV irradiation, was measured by GC-MS. The protective effects of PG on UVB-induced skin photoaging were examined by determining the level of procollagen type I and MMP-1 after UVB irradiation.

RESULTS: Based on the GC-MS quantitative analysis, catechin, quercetin, kaempferol, and equol were the predominant compounds detected in PG. In the changes of expression of procollagen type I and MMP-1 in UV irradiated human skin fibroblasts treated PG, especially extract prepared from rind, the synthesis of collagen was increased and the expression of MMP-1 was decreased.

CONCLUSION: The major polyphenols in PG, particularly catechin, play a significant role in its photoprotective effects on UVB-induced skin damage.

PMID: 20465664 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


Broad spectrum antimutagenic activity of antioxidant active fraction of Punica granatum L. peel extracts.
Zahin M, Aqil F, Ahmad I.

Department of Agricultural Microbiology, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh 202002, India.
Over the past few decades, scientific research has indicated a credible basis for some of the traditional ethnomedicinal uses of pomegranate. This study aims to evaluate the broad spectrum antioxidant and antimutagenic activities of peel extracts of pomegranate. The sequentially extracted Punica granatum peel fractions were tested for their antioxidant activity by DPPH free radical scavenging, phosphomolybdenum, FRAP (Fe(3+) reducing power) and CUPRAC (cupric ions (Cu(2+)) reducing ability) assays. The methanol fraction showed highest antioxidant activity by all the four in vitro assays comparable to ascorbic acid and butylated hydroxy toluene (BHT) followed by activity in ethanol, acetone, and ethyl acetate fractions. Based on the promising antioxidant activities, the methanol fraction was evaluated for antimutagenic activity by Ames Salmonella/microsome assay against sodium azide (NaN(3)), methyl methane sulphonate (MMS), 2-aminofluorene (2-AF) and benzo(a)pyrene (B(a)P) induced mutagenicity in Salmonella typhimurium (TA97a, TA98, TA100 and TA102) tester strains. The methanol fraction showed no sign of mutagenicity at tested concentration of 10-80μg/mL. This fraction showed antimutagenic activity against NaN(3) and MMS with percent inhibition of mutagenicity ranging from 66.76% to 91.86% in a concentration-dependent manner. Similar trend of inhibition of mutagenicity (81.2-88.58%) against indirect mutagens (2-AF and B(a)P) was also recorded. Phytochemical analysis by HPLC, LC-MS and total phenolic content revealed high content of ellagitannins which might be responsible for promising antioxidant and antimutagenic activities of P. granatum peel extract. Further, contribution of bioactive compounds detected in this study is to be explored to understand the exact mechanism of action as well as their therapeutic efficacy.

Copyright 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
PMID: 20708098 [PubMed - in process]


The influence of pomegranate by-product and punicalagins on selected groups of human intestinal microbiota.
Bialonska D, Ramnani P, Kasimsetty SG, Muntha KR, Gibson GR, Ferreira D.

Department of Pharmacognosy, School of Pharmacy, The University of Mississippi, 38677 University, USA.
We have examined the gut bacterial metabolism of pomegranate by-product (POMx) and major pomegranate polyphenols, punicalagins, using pH-controlled, stirred, batch culture fermentation systems reflective of the distal region of the human large intestine. Incubation of POMx or punicalagins with faecal bacteria resulted in formation of the dibenzopyranone-type urolithins. The time course profile confirmed the tetrahydroxylated urolithin D as the first product of microbial transformation, followed by compounds with decreasing number of phenolic hydroxy groups: the trihydroxy analogue urolithin C and dihydroxylated urolithin A. POMx exposure enhanced the growth of total bacteria, Bifidobacterium spp. and Lactobacillus spp., without influencing the Clostridium coccoides-Eubacterium rectale group and the C. histolyticum group. In addition, POMx increased concentrations of short chain fatty acids (SCFA) viz. acetate, propionate and butyrate in the fermentation medium. Punicalagins did not affect the growth of bacteria or production of SCFA. The results suggest that POMx oligomers, composed of gallic acid, ellagic acid and glucose units, may account for the enhanced growth of probiotic bacteria.

Copyright 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
PMID: 20452076 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


Cancer chemoprevention by pomegranate: laboratory and clinical evidence.
Adhami VM, Khan N, Mukhtar H.

Department of Dermatology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, Wisconsin 53706, USA.
Pomegranate fruit from the tree Punica granatum has been dubbed as the "nature's power fruit." Dating back to Biblical times, the tree itself is attributed to possess extraordinary medicinal properties. The geographical distribution of the tree, being native to the Middle East and some Asian countries, is generally attributed to a lack of interest in its medicinal properties by many western scientists. However, the unique biochemical composition of the pomegranate fruit being rich in antioxidant tannins and flavonoids has recently drawn attention of many investigators to study its exceptional healing qualities. Recent research has shown that pomegranate extracts selectively inhibit the growth of breast, prostate, colon and lung cancer cells in culture. In preclinical animal studies, oral consumption of pomegranate extract inhibited growth of lung, skin, colon and prostate tumors. An initial phase II clinical trial of pomegranate juice in patients with prostate cancer reported significant prolongation of prostate specific antigen doubling time. This review focuses on recent investigations into the effects of pomegranate fruit on cancer.

PMID: 20155621 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]Free PMC Article


Senior Member
NorthEastern USA
Diesel, I think this is an awesome idea. Eating properly is so important for us, how would this be done though, organized, so it is easy to access. I believe a proper diet is as important....maybe MORE important, than drugs. Food as preventive medicine....

If we think along these lines, do you think the "treatment" forum (cannot remember the official name) would be a good place to store the info. Certainly knowing the benefits of different foods helps planning on beneficial meals, and beneficial intake of food should be our goal and life style.



Senior Member
NorthEastern USA
Oh wait a minute, you called this the Food RESEARCH thread..... now I get it. Well, I had lost the thread before I replied the first time, could not remember who had posted it (sorry), and it disappeared from "what's new" list. I had a hard time finding it. When this thread gets up and running I will delete (or have deleted) my ramblings to make the thread more concise. Again, I think this is a great idea. June
Oh wait a minute, you called this the Food RESEARCH thread..... now I get it. Well, I had lost the thread before I replied the first time, could not remember who had posted it (sorry), and it disappeared from "what's new" list. I had a hard time finding it. When this thread gets up and running I will delete (or have deleted) my ramblings to make the thread more concise. Again, I think this is a great idea. June
Hi June, I agree with you. We eat foods every day and even if the vitamins, minerals, bioflavonoids etc. and all other ingredients are not as concentrated as in supplements I'm quite sure that they have a major impact in the long run. In addition to that their structure and the components of foods often cannot be copied by supplements. Moreover the many components of foods often have synergistic effects. Vitamin C for example has a much higher bio-availability if eaten together with bioflavonoids . Kiwi has its benefits over ascorbic acid tablets. Unfortunately many PWCs have fructose and other intolerances so many foods are no choice for them.

Two to three kiwis a day could keep cancer at bay by helping to repair
damaged DNA, suggests a pilot study from the home of the fruit.
A pilot study from New Zealand has reported that a daily "prescribed"
kiwifruit, in tandem with dietary advice and improved physical
activity, led to a significant increase in repair of damaged DNA.
""Prescription" of daily kiwifruit may provide a sustainable
population intervention that could reduce some of the risk factors
associated with cancer," wrote lead author Elaine Rush from AUT
University in Auckland.
Studies from the same university have reported that kiwifruit have
laxative effects and could help combat serious cases of constipation,
while studies from the University of Oslo have reported that two to
three kiwifruit a day significantly reduced blood clotting in human
volunteers and could offer protection from strokes and deep vein
The new randomised controlled trial recruited 12 healthy volunteers
(six men, six women, average age 43, average BMI 27.5 kg per sq. m).
For the first three weeks the subjects were left to live 'normally'
with no dietary intervention. After week 3, all subjects were given
lifestyle advice, including eating habits and physical activity.
After week 6, the subjects were randomly assigned to either the
control (no kiwifruit) group, or to receive a daily dose of kiwifruit
equivalent to one kiwi for every 30 kg of body weight.
Blood samples were taken at the start and at subsequent three week
intervals to measure blood lipid levels (cholesterol, triglycerides)
and to assess DNA damage markers.
No significant changes were observed for weight, blood pressure, or
blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels for either of the groups.
This last result is at odds with the Oslo research that reported a
drop of 15 per cent for triglyceride levels, although the intervention
times are not the same, which limits the ability to directly compare.
Interestingly, when the cells of the subjects were challenged with
peroxide (to induce damage) it was found that cells of people
supplemented with kiwis "showed an improved ability of the DNA to
repair itself after the peroxide challenge."
This protective effect was also found to persist for up to 24 hours.
No mechanism is proposed by the researchers but they do hint towards
the antioxidant content of the fruit that could protect against the
oxidising challenge of the peroxide, which in turn reduce the presence
of damaged DNA and potential subsequent cancer formation.
The fruit are a rich source of polyphenols, vitamins C and E, and
"We have provided the evidence that would endorse the provision of
free or easily accessible fruit and vegetables to populations at risk
because of poor diet; children, for example, should be beneficial in
the long-term prevention of cancer and other "lifestyle" diseases,"
concluded the researchers.
New Zealand's largest kiwi supply company, Seeka Kiwifruit Industries,
reportedly handles more than 27 per cent of NZ's crop, which totals
about 23 million trays of Green, Gold and Organic fruit. The company
recently announced it was extending its business portfolio into the
nutraceutical world by marketing a kiwi supplement.
The company are aiming to market the supplement on the strength of its
laxative benefits.


Senior Member
"Two to three kiwis a day
could keep cancer at bay
by helping to repair damaged DNA." Wow, that rhymes! I'm going to remember it.


Senior Member
NorthEastern USA
I was just on the Whole Foods site, TURNIP GREENS! I was researching kale which I have just become interested in.... more on that later.

Turnip greens
What's New and Beneficial About Turnip Greens

The noticeably bitter taste of turnip greens has been linked by researchers to its calcium content. On an ounce-for-ounce basis, turnip greens contain about 4 times more calcium than a much less bitter-tasting cruciferous vegetables like cabbage. Even in comparison to mustard greens, turnip greens contain about twice the calcium content. High calcium content is not the only reason for the noticeable bitterness of turnip greens, of course. But it may be an important contributing factor. While the commercial food industry has sometimes tried to breed out the bitter-tasting constituents from turnip greens, this practice doesn't make sense if you want to maximize your nourishment from this cruciferous vegetable. A much healthier approach would be the use a recipe and cooking method that brings out the delicious potential of turnip greens in a flavor-blended way.
For total glucosinolate content, turnip greens outscore cabbage, kale, cauliflower, and broccoli among the most commonly eaten cruciferous vegetables. That fantastic glucosinolate content brings with it some equally fantastic health benefits. The glucosinolates in turnip greens are phytonutrients that can be converted into isothiocyanates (ITCs) with cancer-preventing properties. All cruciferous vegetables have long been known to contain glucosinolates, but it has taken recent research to show us exactly how valuable turnip greens are in this regard.
WHFoods Recommendations

You'll want to include turnip greens as one of the cruciferous vegetables you eat on a regular basis if you want to receive the fantastic health benefits provided by the cruciferous vegetable family. At a minimum, include cruciferous vegetables as part of your diet 2-3 times per week, and make the serving size at least 1-1/2 cups. Even better from a health standpoint, enjoy turnip greens and other vegetables from the cruciferous vegetable group 4-5 times per week, and increase your serving size to 2 cups.

We recommend Healthy Steaming turnip greens for maximum nutrition and flavor. Cut greens into -inch slices and let sit for at least 5 minutes to enhance it health-promoting benefits and steam for 5 minutes. Toss with our Mediterranean Dressing (see Healthiest Way to Cook Turnip Greens in the How to Enjoy section below).

This chart graphically details the %DV that a serving of Turnip greens provides for each of the nutrients of which it is a good, very good, or excellent source according to our Food Rating System. Additional information about the amount of these nutrients provided by Turnip greens can be found in the Food Rating System Chart. A link that takes you to the In-Depth Nutritional Profile for Turnip greens, featuring information over 80 nutrients, can be found under the Food Rating System Chart.

Health Benefits
How to Select and Store
How to Enjoy
Individual Concerns
Nutritional Profile
Health Benefits

Unlike some of their fellow cruciferous vegetables, turnip greens have not been the direct focus of most health-oriented research studies. However, turnip greens have sometimes been included in a longer list of cruciferous vegetables that have been lumped together and studied to determine potential types of health benefits. Based upon several dozen studies involving cruciferous vegetables as a group (and including turnip greens on the list of vegetables studied), cancer prevention appears to be a standout area for turnip greens when summarizing health benefits.

This connection between turnip greens and cancer prevention should not be surprising since turnip greens provide special nutrient support for three body systems that are closely connected with cancer development as well as cancer prevention. These three systems are (1) the body's detox system, (2) its antioxidant system, and (3) its inflammatory/anti-inflammatory system. Chronic imbalances in any of these three systems can increase risk of cancer, and when imbalances in all three systems occur simultaneously, the risk of cancer increases significantly. Among all types of cancer, prevention of the following cancer types is most closely associated with intake of turnip greens: bladder cancer, breast cancer, colon cancer, lung cancer, prostate cancer, and ovarian cancer.

Detox Support

The detox support provided by turnip greens includes antioxidant nutrients to boost Phase 1 detoxification activities and sulfur-containing nutrients to boost Phase 2 activities. Turnip greens also contain phytonutrients called glucosinolates that can help activate detoxification enzymes and regulate their activity. Two key glucosinolates that have been clearly identified in turnip greens in significant amounts are gluconasturtiian and glucotropaeolin.

If we fail to give our body's detox system adequate nutritional support, yet continue to expose ourselves to unwanted toxins through our lifestyle and our dietary choices, we can place our bodies at increased risk of toxin-related damage that can eventually increase our cells' risk of becoming cancerous. That's one of the reasons it's so important to bring turnip greens and other cruciferous vegetables into our diet on a regular basis.

Antioxidant Benefits

As an excellent source of vitamin C, vitamin E, beta-carotene, and manganese, turnip greens provide highest level support for four conventional antioxidant nutrients. But the antioxidant support provided by turnip greens extends far beyond these conventional nutrients and into the realm of phytonutrients. Hydroxycinnamic acid, quercetin, myricetin, isorhamnetin, and kaempferol are among the key antioxidant phytonutrients provided by turnip greens. This broad spectrum antioxidant support helps lower the risk of oxidative stress in our cells. Chronic oxidative stress-meaning chronic presence over overly reactive oxygen-containing molecules and cumulative damage to our cells by these molecules-is a risk factor for development of most cancer types. By providing us with a diverse array of antioxidant nutrients, turnip greens help lower our cancer risk by helping us avoid chronic and unwanted oxidative stress.

Anti-inflammatory Benefits

As an excellent source of vitamin K and a good source of omega-3 fatty acids (in the form of alpha-linolenic acid, or ALA), turnip greens provide us with two hallmark anti-inflammatory nutrients. Vitamin K acts as a direct regulator of our inflammatory response, and ALA is the building block for several of the body's most widely-used families of anti-inflammatory messaging molecules. While glucobrassicin (a glucosinolate found in many cruciferous vegetables, and the precursor for the anti-inflammatory molecule indole-3-carbinol) does not appear to be present in turnip greens in significant amounts, other glucosinolates present in turnip greens may provide important anti-inflammatory benefits and are the subject of current research.

Like chronic oxidative stress and chronic weakened detox ability, chronic unwanted inflammation can significantly increase our risk of cancers and other chronic diseases (especially cardiovascular diseases).

Cardiovascular Support

Researchers have looked at a variety of cardiovascular problems-including heart attack, ischemic heart disease, and atherosclerosis-and found preliminary evidence of an ability on the part of cruciferous vegetables to lower our risk of these health problems. Yet regardless of the specific cardiovascular problem, it is one particular type of cardiovascular benefit that has most interested researchers, and that benefit is the anti-inflammatory nature of turnip greens and their fellow cruciferous vegetables. Scientists have not always viewed cardiovascular problems as having a central inflammatory component, but the role of unwanted inflammation in creating problems for our blood vessels and circulation has become increasingly fundamental to an understanding of cardiovascular diseases. While glucoraphanin (a glucosinolate found in many cruciferous vegetables, and the precursor for sulforaphane, an isothiocyanate with important anti-inflammatory properties) does not appear to be present in turnip greens in significant amounts, other glucosinolates present in turnip greens may provide important anti-inflammatory benefits and are the subject of current research.

A second area you can count on turnip greens for cardiovascular support involves their cholesterol-lowering ability. Our liver uses cholesterol as a basic building block to product bile acids. Bile acids are specialized molecules that aid in the digestion and absorption of fat through a process called emulsification. These molecules are typically stored in fluid form in our gall bladder, and when we eat a fat-containing meal, they get released into the intestine where they help ready the fat for interaction with enzymes and eventual absorption up into the body. When we eat turnip greens, fiber-related nutrients in this cruciferous vegetable bind together with some of the bile acids in the intestine in such a way that they simply stay inside the intestine and pass out of our body in a bowel movement, rather than getting absorbed along with the fat they have emulsified. When this happens, our liver needs to replace the lost bile acids by drawing upon our existing supply of cholesterol, and as a result, our cholesterol level drops down. Turnip greens provide us with this cholesterol-lowering benefit whether they are raw or cooked. However, a recent study has shown that the cholesterol-lowering ability of raw turnip greens improves significantly when they are steamed. In fact, when the cholesterol-lowering ability of steamed turnip greens was compared with the cholesterol-lowering ability of the prescription drug cholestyramine (a medication that is taken for the purpose of lowering cholesterol), mustard greens bound 34% as many bile acids (based on a standard of comparison involving total dietary fiber).

It's impossible to talk about the cardiovascular benefits of turnip greens without also mentioning their exceptional folate content. Although this cruciferous vegetable scores a rating of "excellent" in our food rating system, we would like to point out just how "excellent" excellent is when you're talking about turnip greens. These greens provide 575 micrograms of folate in every hundred calories. That's an amount that is unsurpassed by the most commonly-eaten cruciferous vegetables! Folate is a critical B-vitamin for support of cardiovascular health, including its key role in prevention of homocysteine build-up (called hyperhomocysteinemia).

Digestive Support

The fiber content of turnip greens-over 5 grams in every cup-makes this cruciferous vegetable a natural choice for digestive system support. You're going to get 140% of your Daily Value for fiber from only 200 calories' worth of turnip greens! And although not yet confirmed in large-scale human research studies, we eventually expect to see some special digestive benefits coming from turnip greens in the area of glucosinolates, isothiocyanates, and stomach bacteria. While glucoraphanin (a glucosinolate found in many cruciferous vegetables, and the precursor for sulforaphane, an isothiocyanate with important properties involving regulation of a stomach bacteria called Helicobacter pylori) does not appear to be present in turnip greens in significant amounts, other glucosinolates present in turnip greens may provide similar health benefits with respect to prevention of Helicobacter pylori overgrowth in our stomach or too much clinging by this bacterium to our stomach wall.

Pomegranate Juice Components Could Stop Cancer from Spreading, Research Suggests
ScienceDaily (Dec. 13, 2010) — Researchers at the University of California, Riverside have identified components in pomegranate juice that both inhibit the movement of cancer cells and weaken their attraction to a chemical signal that promotes the metastasis of prostate cancer to the bone. The research could lead to new therapies for preventing cancer metastasis.

Performed in the lab of Manuela Martins-Green, a professor of cell biology, the research was presented Dec. 12, 2010 at the 50th annual meeting of the American Society for Cell Biology taking place in Philadelphia.
Prostate cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in men in the United States. To date, there is no cure for it. If prostate cancer recurs after treatments of surgery and/or radiation, usually the next treatment is the suppression of the male hormone testosterone, which inhibits the growth of the cancer cells because they need this hormone to grow. But over time, the cancer develops ways to resist hormone suppression therapies, becomes very aggressive, and metastasizes to the bone marrow, lungs, and lymph nodes, usually resulting in the patient's death.
The Martins-Green lab applied pomegranate juice on laboratory-cultured prostate cancer cells that were resistant to testosterone (the more resistant a cancer cell is to testosterone, the more prone it is to metastasizing).
The researchers -- Martins-Green, graduate student Lei Wang and undergraduate students Andre Alcon and Jeffrey Ho -- found that the pomegranate juice-treated tumor cells that had not died with the treatment showed increased cell adhesion (meaning fewer cells breaking away) and decreased cell migration.
Next, the researchers identified the following active groups of ingredients in pomegranate juice that had a molecular impact on cell adhesion and migration in metastatic prostate cancer cells: phenylpropanoids, hydrobenzoic acids, flavones and conjugated fatty acids.
"Having identified them, we can now modify cancer-inhibiting components in pomegranate juice to improve their functions and make them more effective in preventing prostate cancer metastasis, leading to more effective drug therapies," Martins-Green said. "Because the genes and proteins involved in the movement of prostate cancer cells are essentially the same as those involved in the movement of other types of cancer cells, the same modified components of the juice could have a much broader impact in cancer treatment."
Martins-Green explained that an important protein produced in the bone marrow causes the cancer cells to move to the bone where they can then form new tumors.
"We show that pomegranate juice markedly inhibits the function of this protein, and thus this juice has the potential of preventing metastasis of the prostate cancer cells to the bone," Martins-Green said.
Next, her lab plans to do additional tests in an in vivo model for prostate cancer metastasis to determine whether the same cancer-inhibiting components that work in cultured cells can prevent metastasis without side effects.