AsianScientist (Oct. 31, 2016) – Research from Kumamoto University, Japan has found that a natural compound isolated from onions, onionin A (ONA), has several anti-ovarian cancer properties. This discovery was published in Scientific Reports.
According to a 2014 review of cancer medicines from the World Health Organization, epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is the most common type of ovarian cancer and has a five-year survival rate of approximately 40 percent. Through in vitro experiments, the researchers found that EOC cells showed inhibited growth after introduction of ONA. This was thought to be due to ONA’s influence on STAT3, a transcription factor known to be involved in cancer cell proliferation.
ONA was also found to enhance the effects of anti-cancer drugs by strengthening their anti-proliferation capabilities. Moreover, experiments on an ovarian cancer mouse model that investigated the effects of orally-administered ONA resulted in longer lifespans and inhibited ovarian cancer tumor development.
The research shows that ONA reduces the progression of malignant ovarian cancer tumors by interfering with the pro-tumor function of myeloid cells. ONA appears to activate anti-tumor immune responses by nullifying the immunosuppressive function of myeloid cells. ONA has the potential to enhance existing anti-cancer drugs while also having little to no cytotoxic effects on normal cells.
Additionally, side effects in animals have not been seen. With a little more testing, an oral ONA supplement should greatly benefit cancer patients.
The article can be found at: Tsuboki et al. (2016) Onionin A Inhibits Ovarian Cancer Progression by Suppressing Cancer Cell Proliferation and the Protumour Function of Macrophages.
Source: Kumamoto University; Photo: Pixabay.
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