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Green Tea Catechin Supplement Prevents Prostate Cancer in Men with Pre-malignant Prostate Lesions
James Meschino DC, MS, ROHP
A 2006 study in the journal Cancer Research revealed that providing men with 600 mg of a catechin supplement (derived from green tea) each day prevented the transition from pre-malignant prostate lesions to full blown prostate cancer.
Green tea is a rich source of molecules called catechins, or GTCs, as they are often called. Studies show that GTC’s inhibit cancer growth in several experimental animal models.
With respect to human prostate cancer, studies show that 30% of men with pre-malignant prostate lesions known as “high-grade prostate intraepithelial neoplasia” (HG-PIN)develop prostate cancer (CaP) within 1 year after repeated biopsy.
To see if GTCs supplementation could stop the transition from HG-PIN to CaP, sixty volunteers with HG-PIN were enrolled in a double-blind, placebo-controlled study. The treatment group ingested daily GTCs supplements,consisting of three GTCs capsules – 200 mg each (total 600 mg/d). After 1 year, only one tumor was diagnosed among the 30 GTCs-treated men, whereas nine cancers were found among the 30 placebo-treated men (3% vs 30% prostate cancer incidence).
Men in the GTCs treated group also had PSA levels that were constantly lower than the placebo-treated group throughout the study period. Supplementation with GTC’s also improved symptoms of prostate enlargement (benign prostatic hyperplasia) and reduced lower urinary tract symptoms. No significant side effects or adverse effects were reported by the men supplementing with GTCs.
The study researchers note that this was the first study to show that GTCs supplementation is safe and very effective for treating premalignant lesions before CaP develops, and are helpful in reversing symptoms of enlarged prostate problems (BPH).
Bertuzzi S, Brausi M, Rizzi F, Castagnetti G, Peracchia G, Corti A. Chemoprevention of human prostate cancer by oral administration of green tea catechins in volunteers with high-grade prostate intraepithelial neoplasia: a preliminary report from a one-year proof-of-principle study. Cancer Research. 2006. Jan 15; 66 (2): 1234-40