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Neoplasma. 2002;49(2):69-74.

Prostate cancer and the food supplement, PC-SPES. Minireview.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, Palacky University and Faculty Hospital in Olomouc, Czech Republic.


Cancer of the prostate has now become the most frequently diagnosed cancer in the male population in America and indeed its incidence has increased in many westernised countries. Surgery, radiotherapy and androgen ablation form the mainstay of its treatment. However, these treatment modalities are ineffective in a large percentage of patients due to grade of tumor at presentation, sensitivity to radiotherapy, hormone-insensitive profile of tumor cell population, etc. Because of the woeful ineffectiveness of these standard treatment modalities on the overall survival rate from prostate cancer in the past fifty years, a more radical approach to the treatment of this cancer is justified. To this end some of the latest innovative approaches are now being tested as tools in prostate cancer research, including those pioneered in molecular and cellular biology and immunology. There has also arisen a considerable interest in the modification of diet and the use of herbs and a great interest has been stimulated in PC-SPES, a herbal food supplement sold in the USA. This product, which is composed of eight herbs, is recommended as a food supplement for those suffering from prostate cancer and there are many anecdotal, scientific and clinical claims for its efficacy. This is a review of some of the in vivo and in vitro research carried out on this product.

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