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article imageMango effective in preventing, stopping certain cancer cells

By Bob Ewing     Jan 12, 2010 in Health
A study by Texas AgriLife Research food scientists found that the mango is able prevent or stop certain colon and breast cancer cells in the lab.
Recently, the National Mango Board commissioned a variety of studies with several U.S. researchers to discover the mango's nutritional value.
"If you look at what people currently perceive as a superfood, people think of high antioxidant capacity, and mango is not quite there," said Dr. Susanne Talcott in the media release.
Talcott is working with her husband Dr. Steve Talcott and together they conducted the study on cancer cells.
Talcott added” In comparison with antioxidants in blueberry, acai and pomegranate, it's not even close."
The duo discovered when they tested mango, it prevented or stopped cancer growth in certain breast and colon cell lines.
"It has about four to five times less antioxidant capacity than an average wine grape, and it still holds up fairly well in anticancer activity. If you look at it from the physiological and nutritional standpoint, taking everything together, it would be a high-ranking super food," she said.
"It would be good to include mangoes as part of the regular diet."
Mango polyphenol extracts in vitro were tested on colon, breast, lung, leukemia and prostate cancers.
Polyphenols are natural substances in plants and are associated with a variety of compounds known to promote good health.
While mango showed some impact on lung, leukemia and prostate cancers, it was most effective on the most common breast and colon cancers.
"What we found is that not all cell lines are sensitive to the same extent to an anticancer agent," she said.
"But the breast and colon cancer lines underwent apotosis, or programmed cell death. Additionally, we found that when we tested normal colon cells side by side with the colon cancer cells, that the mango polyphenolics did not harm the normal cells."
"We found the normal cells weren't killed, so mango is not expected to be damaging in the body," Talcott added.
"That is a general observation for any natural agent, that they target cancer cells and leave the healthy cells alone, in reasonable concentrations at least."
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