(NaturalNews) A new study on the herb graviola published in the October 2012 issue of Cancer Letter has cancer researchers buzzing. Graviola, the tropical fruit with the unusual nickname "sour sop," stops cancer tumor cells from growing in pancreatic cancer.
Scientists prove the cancer-healing abilities of graviola in the lab and in living tissue
Oncologists agree that pancreatic cancer is one of the most difficult types of cancer to treat, and that being diagnosed with cancer of the pancreas is as good as a death sentence. The new study, performed by a cancer research team at the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, shows that graviola kills pancreatic cancer cells by inhibiting cellular metabolism. This cancer tumor-fighting ability has been confirmed both in test tubes and in live subjects.
Graviola works by inhibiting numerous signaling pathways that manage how pancreatic cancer cells grow, how long they live, and how the cancer tumors spread within the host. By altering these parameters, the rate of new cancer cell growth and spread of the disease slowed significantly.
The team of researchers considers the characteristics possessed by graviola "promising."
Graviola stops breast cancer as well
Nutrition and Cancer confirms the cancer- inhibiting phytochemicals in graviola. The medical journal's June 2011 issue includes a study on graviola and breast cancer. In this study, scientists at Virginia Tech demonstrated that graviola fruit extract (juice) could reduce the growth of cancer on the skin of human breast cancer patients without damaging healthy breast tissue.
Mice who took 200 mg graviola fruit extract per kilogram of food in their diet for five weeks had a significant reduction in protein expression in breast cancer tumors. Overall, graviola extract was able to reduce tumor growth by 32 percent.
Graviola benefits do not stop at cancer
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center has a new page on its website describing the health benefits of graviola. Besides slowing cancer, MSKCC gives clinical evidence that graviola also fights viruses, kills parasites, reduces inflammation, and reverses the glycemic load which leads to diabetes.
These medical studies suggest that graviola extract may be useful to treat herpes simplex virus-1 (Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 1998) and other viral infections.
Graviola is associated with neurotoxicity in one people group
For most people, the graviola, or sour sop fruit, is considered a stand-alone dessert fruit with a flavor described as strawberry-pineapple mixed with coconut or banana cream. It is a popular flavor for juices and ice cream in Central American countries.
However, the fruit has been associated with a neurological disease similar to Parkinson's disease on the Caribbean Island of Guadeloupe, according to several studies, including one published in a 2006 article of the Journal of Neural Transmission.
PubMed.gov, Nutrition and Cancer. 2011; 63(5):795-801. "Selective growth inhibition of human breast cancer cells by graviola fruit extract in vitro and in vivo involving downregulation of EGFR expression." Dai and Hogan, et al. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21767082
PubMed.gov, Cancer Letters. 2012 Oct 1; 323(1):29-40. "Graviola: a novel promising natural-derived drug that inhibits tumorigenicity and metastasis of pancreatic cancer cells in vitro and in vivo through altering cell metabolism." Torres, et al. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22475682
PubMed.gov, Journal of Ethnopharmacology. 1998 May; 61(1):81-3. "Effect of the extract of Annona muricata and Petunia nyctaginiflora on Herpes simplex virus." Padma P, et al. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9687085