Italian researchers from the University of Calabria say they demonstrated how a key ingredient in red wine inhibits the proliferation of human breast cancer cells. Resveratrol is the ingredient they say might be useful in the treatment of breast cancer, in addition to primary therapies. In their experiment resveratrol was applied to different cells and compared to cells that received no treatment. The cells receiving resveratrol showed a decrease in growth. A large reduction in estrogen receptor levels was believed to be related to the inhibition of the breast cancer cells. Their research study was published in the Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology.
“These findings are exciting, but in no way does it mean that should people go out and start using red wine or resveratrol supplements as a treatment for breast cancer,” said Gerald Weissmann, M.D., Editor-in-Chief. (Source: ScienceDaily.com) He said the research is more about the potential of resveratrol to be helpful in the future.
This year it was also found to potentially increase the effectiveness of a chemotherapy drug called rapamycin. In fact it could double the effect of the drug. Resveratrol is often depicted in the media as being linked to red wine, without mention of other sources. However, it also can be found in supplement form and in other foods such grapes, grape juice, peanuts, blueberries, bilberries, and cranberries. So if you are interested in adding resveratrol to your diet, but don’t want to consume wine containing alcohol, you can simply try these foods. Dark colored grapes are believed to contain more than lighter ones. Muscadine grapes have more resveratrol than the white kind.
Image Credit: Muscadine grapes, Carl Hunter @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database