HOUSTON—A new study published in the International Journal of Oncology revealed homeopathic remedies have a beneficial effect on breast cancer cells (2010 Feb;36(2):395-403).Researchers conducted an in vitro study to determine if products prescribed by a clinic in India have any effect on breast cancer cell lines. They studied four ultra-diluted remedies (Carcinosin, Phytolacca, Conium and Thuja) against two human breast adenocarcinoma cell lines (MCF-7 and MDA-MB-231) and a cell line derived from immortalized normal human mammary epithelial cells (HMLE).
The remedies exerted preferential cytotoxic effects against the two breast cancer cell lines, causing cell cycle delay/arrest and apoptosis. These effects were accompanied by altered expression of the cell cycle regulatory proteins, including downregulation of phosphorylated Rb and upregulation of the CDK inhibitor p27, which were likely responsible for the cell cycle delay/arrest as well as induction of the apoptotic cascade that manifested in the activation of caspase 7 and cleavage of PARP in the treated cells. The findings demonstrated biological activity of these natural products when presented at ultra-diluted doses.
Moshe Frenkel, M.D., lead researcher and associate professor at the University of Texas and the medical director of the Integrative Medicine Program at the M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, said: “We felt homeopathy needed to be tested in the same way we test new chemotherapeutic drugs. We were quite impressed to find homeopathic remedies have similar effects to chemotherapy on breast cancer cells but without affecting normal cells, a very exciting finding. As far as we know, this is the first study that evaluated the effect of homeopathic remedies on breast cancer cells."