New studies regarding the efficacy of antioxidants and their impact on standard cancer treatment


Thousand Oaks, CA, USA November 12, 2004 There is much debate in the medical community about whether antioxidants interfere with cancer treatment by providing tumor protection or whether they improve the efficacy of treatment by mitigating toxicity and side effects. The December 2004 issue of the journal Integrative Cancer Therapies, entitled "Antioxidants and Cancer Therapy", offers hard evidence on the potential value and risks of the use of antioxidants to improve the tolerability and efficacy of cancer treatment regimens.

Some of the intriguing findings from the research in this issue include:

  • The relationship of antioxidants and carcinogenesis, including the use of -carotene in cancer prevention and a discussion of its prooxidant activity (Homer S. Black).

  • The formation of aldehydes as the central concern of oxidant stress for cancer therapy and how to ameliorate such stress (Kenneth A. Conklin).

  • The first study that examines oxidative damage directly in the bone marrow of children with ALL (acute lymphoblastic leukemia) using (8-oxo-dG) as a biomarker for oxidative stress. One important result is the discovery that the levels of individual antioxidants vary according to disease status. (Deborah D. Kennedy, Regina M. Santella, Qiao Wang, Elena J. Ladas, and Kara M. Kelly).

  • Specific nutritional protocols for both active cancer treatment and maintenance protocols, including the unfavorable effects of non-prescribed vitamins and nutritional supplements taken during treatment and multi-vitamins with low dosages of antioxidants after the completion of therapy (Kedar N. Prasad).

  • Investigation of a potential radioprotective agent with little or no toxicity that was developed from the fruit of Aegle marmelos (AME) (Ganesh Chandra Jagetia, Ponemone Venkatesh and Manjeshwar Shrinath Baliga).

  • Compelling evidence that antioxidants do not interfere with chemotherapeutics and may actually protect normal cells from cytotoxic onslaught (Carmia Borek).

    A nontoxic agent that moderates treatment side effects without unduly protecting malignant tumors has much to offer oncology, including: 1) a lower need for dose reduction or treatment delay; 2) an improvement in quality of life for the cancer patient; 3) less oncology staff time spent dealing with side effects and patient complaints; 4) a lower need for pharmaceuticals; 5) fewer adverse reactions. (Keith I. Block)

    Source: Eurekalert & others

    Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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