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you are visiting: home » products » WonderOver » composition » soy (Pag. 1) » soy (Pag. 8)
Soy - Pag. 8


Soy: natural ingredient of WonderOver

Cancer killer - A hormone in soya beans starves tumour cells to death
New Scientist 14 mar 98

Biochemists in the United States have identified as a key ingredient in soy beans annihilates cancer. They showed that genistein, a plant estrogen, plays a key role in suppres-
sing the growth of cancerous cells. Asian diets high in soy have been linked to a lower incidence of cancer, particularly breast, colon and prostate cancer.

This bond has been reinforced by evidence that when Asians migrate to the U.S. and abandon the soy-rich diet, their risk of developing these cancers increases.
Amy Lee of the University of Southern California in Los Angeles has discovered that genistein is a key factor in this. It works by weakening the cancer cells’ response to the stresses that usually impel them to grow faster. “When a cancer cell growing at full blast, the cells soon run out of oxygen and glucose that are normally supplied by the blood”, says Lee. To compensate, they send out an SOS chemical that unleashes the formation of new vessels to nourish the tumor, a process called angiogenesis.

In previous experiments on tissue cultures, Lee and others have demonstrated that genistein may blunt the response of cancer cells to stress. Now, they know the exact mechanism. She and her colleague Zhou Yanhong have demonstrated that genistein blocks the action of a transcription factor known as the CCAAT binding factor.

This protein normally binds to a genetic “reason” important in DNA and triggers the stress genes. Genistein adds phosphorus to the binding factor, neutralizing it before it is activated, so that cancerous cells die because deprived of their nutrition (Journal of the National Cancer Institute, vol 90, p 381).

“This is preliminary evidence, but genistein really stands out as the ingredient that is most active in blocking cancer growth and angiogenesis”, says Lee. Crucial thing, the researchers found that genistein has no effect on normal, healthy cells that are not rapidly dividing cells such as cancer. “Do not shut off the normal synthesis of this protein in healthy cells”, says Lee (Andy Coghlan).

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