Soy compound prevents human prostate cancer: study

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Washington, Mar 18 (UNI) A compound found in soybeans almost completely prevents the spread of human prostate cancer, according to a new study.

Researchers said the amount of the chemical, an antioxidant known as genistein, used in the experiments was no higher than what a human would eat in a soybean-rich diet.

Scientists from Northwestern University found that genistein decreased chances of prostate cancer to the lungs by 96 per cent in mice.

''These results give us hope that genistein might show some effect in preventing the spread of prostate cancer in patients,'' said the study's senior investigator, Raymond C Bergan, MD, director of experimental therapeutics for the Robert H Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University.

''Diet can affect cancer and it doesn't do it by magic,'' Dr Bergan said. Certain chemicals have beneficial effects and now we have all the preclinical studies we need to suggest genistein might be a very promising chemopreventive drug,'' Sciencedaily quoted him as saying.

The researchers found that while genistein didn't reduce the size of tumours that developed within the prostate, it stopped lung metastasis almost completely. They repeated the experiment and found the same result.

He said the study also found that mice fed genistein expressed higher levels of genes that were involved in cancer cell migration which, Dr Bergan said, at first might not make sense in light of the study's conclusion that genistein almost completely blocked metastasis.


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