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Complementary Medicine, Prostate Cancer Research Featuredat AUA MeetingComplementary Medicine, Prostate Cancer Research Featuredat AUA Meeting

June 23, 2003

2 Min Read
Complementary Medicine, Prostate Cancer Research Featuredat AUA Meeting


Complementary Medicine, Prostate Cancer Research Featuredat AUA Meeting


Three studies involving complementary medicine and prostatecancer were presented at the annual meeting of the American UrologicalAssociation (AUA, www.auanet.org), held hereApril 26 to May 1. The first study, conducted by researchers from Kansas City,indicated the use of complementary medicine is common among men with urologicdisease, and almost half of 302 men questioned took it to benefit prostatehealth. The most common supplements taken included vitamin E (73 percent),vitamin D (34 percent), zinc (27 percent), soy products (24 percent) and sawpalmetto (24 percent). Researchers concluded urologists should include questionsregarding complementary medicine in their basic patient evaluation since manypreparations can affect the clinical evaluation of prostate disease.

In the second study, researchers from the University of California (UC),Davis, demonstrated dietary intake of the soy isoflavone genistein may reducelevels of prostate specific antigen (PSA), a marker for prostate cancer. In thestudy, 62 men with biopsy-proven prostate cancer and elevated PSA levels weregiven 5 g/d of genistein concentrated polysaccharide (GCP, the trademark forwhich is owned by Japan-based Amino Up Chemical) for six months. Of the 62 men,16 were on watchful waiting, and the remaining 46 had undergone surgery,radiation or hormone therapy. From the 16 men on watchful waiting, three droppedout of the study due to diarrhea, and of the remaining 13, eight saw a drop inPSA levels up to 61 percent. The other five watchful waiting patients exhibitedincreased PSA levels. This study must be interpreted cautiously because thenumbers of men enrolled are small, said Ralph deVere White, professor andchair of urology at UC Davis. However, the findings do stimulate us to do alarger, placebo-controlled trial in patients who are on watchful waiting.

The third study, conducted by researchers in Basel, Switzerland, demonstratedthat vitamin E and lycopene may help prevent prostate cancer by increasingnecrosis (cell or tissue death). Researchers injected 30 male rats with prostatetumor cells and administered lycopene (supplied by Roche Vitamins) and/orvitamin E food supplements starting four weeks before and ending 18 days aftertumor injection. An analysis of tumor volume and tumor necrosis rate indicatedthe percentage of necrosis was significantly higher in groups taking thesupplements, with vitamin E increasing mean necrotic areas to 36.4 percent andlycopene increasing necrotic areas to 36 percent. The group receiving bothvitamin E and lycopene demonstrated a necrosis rate of 28.5 percent, thiscompared to 20 percent necrosis in untreated animals. Tumor volumes and weightsafter 18 days were not significantly different among the groups. For moreinformation on this study, visit www.roche-vitamins.comor Booth #1548 at the IFT Food Expo.

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