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Parsley, celery carry crucial component for fight against breast cancer, MU researcher finds
Date:5/9/2011

Parsley is usually used as a decorative accent to a scrumptious meal, but don't set it aside just yet. In a new study, a University of Missouri researcher has found that a compound in parsley and other plant products, including fruits and nuts, can stop certain breast cancer tumor cells from multiplying and growing. The study was published recently in Cancer Prevention Research.

In his study, Salman Hyder, the Zalk Endowed Professor in Tumor Angiogenesis and professor of biomedical sciences in the College of Veterinary Medicine and the Dalton Cardiovascular Research Center, exposed rats with a certain type of breast cancer to apigenin, a common compound found in parsley and other plant products. The rats that were exposed to the apigenin developed fewer tumors and experienced significant delays in tumor formation compared to those rats that were not exposed to apigenin. Hyder believes this finding could impact women who are taking certain hormone replacement therapies.

"Six to 10 million women in the United States receive hormone replacement therapy (HRT)," Hyder said. "We know that certain synthetic hormones used in HRT accelerate breast tumor development. In our study, we exposed the rats to one of the chemicals used in the most common HRTs received in the United States a progestin called medroxyprogesterone acetate (MPA) which also happens to be the same synthetic hormone that accelerates breast tumor development."

When tumor cells develop in the breast in response to MPA, they encourage new blood vessels to form within tumors. The blood vessels then supply needed nutrients for the tumors to grow and multiply. Hyder found that apigenin blocked new blood vessel formation, thereby delaying, and sometimes stopping, the development of the tumors. Hyder also found that the compound reduced the overall number of tumors. However, while apigenin did delay tumor growth, it did not stop the initial formation of cancer cells with
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Contact: Steven Adams
AdamsST@missouri.edu
573-882-8353
University of Missouri-Columbia
Source:Eurekalert  

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Parsley, celery carry crucial component for fight against breast cancer, MU researcher finds
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