Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Scientists from the UK and Spain have discovered a compound found in green tea that inhibits the growth of cancer cells. The joint in vitro study confirmed that naturally occurring polyphenol, EGCG (epigallocathecin gallate), prevents cancer cells from growing by binding to a specific enzyme, thereby stopping this enzyme from making DNA. According to scientists, this helps explain decreased rates of certain cancers in regular tea drinkers. Concentrations used in the test are equivalent to those found in the blood of people who drink 2 or 3 cups of green tea a day. Researchers hope that this breakthrough will lead to new anti-cancer drugs based on the structure of the EGCG molecule.