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Free Radic Res. 2011 Aug;45(8):864-79. doi: 10.3109/10715762.2011.582869. Epub 2011 Jun 9.

Cancer and diet: How are they related?

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  • 1Cytokine Research Laboratory, Department of Experimental Therapeutics, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA.

Abstract

Extensive research in the past decade has revealed cancer to be a multigenic disease caused by perturbation of multiple cell signalling pathways and dysregulation of numerous gene products, all of which have been linked to inflammation. It is also becoming evident that various lifestyle factors, such as tobacco and alcohol use, diet, environmental pollution, radiation and infections, can cause chronic inflammation and lead to tumourigenesis. Chronic diseases caused by ongoing inflammation therefore require chronic, not acute, treatment. Nutraceuticals, compounds derived from fruits, vegetables, spices and cereals, can be used chronically. This study discusses the molecular targets of some nutraceuticals that happen to be markers of chronic inflammation and how they can prevent or treat cancer. These naturally-occurring agents in the diet have great potential as anti-cancer drugs, thus proving Hippocrates, who proclaimed 25 centuries ago, 'Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food'.

PMID:
21651450
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3564493
Free PMC Article
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