Whole tomato extract found to induce gastric cancer cell death

Paul Basilio, MDLinx | May 17, 2017

A new study in the Journal of Cellular Physiology found that whole tomato extracts can inhibit growth of gastric cancer cells and other malignant features. The findings open the door to additional studies involving prevention and the potential for a complement to conventional oncologic therapies.

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Distinct species may exert different effects in different stages of a certain neoplasm, according to researcher Daniela Barone.

The experiments analyzed whole tomato lipophilic extracts for their ability to affect various neoplastic features of gastric cancer cell lines. Extracts from San Marzano and Corbarino cultivars were able to inhibit the growth and cloning behavior of malignant cells.

“Their antitumoral effect seem not related to specific components, such as lycopene, but rather suggest that tomatoes should be considered in their entirety,” said Daniela Barone, a researcher at the Oncology Research Center of Mercogliano (CROM), and one of the authors of the study.

Treatment with the whole tomato extracts affected key processes within the cells. The extracts hindered the cells’ migration ability, arrested the cell cycle through the modulation of retinoblastoma family proteins and specific cell cycle inhibitors, and ultimately induced cancer cell death through apoptosis.

“Our results prompt further assessment of the potential use of specific nutrients not only in the cancer prevention setting but also as a supportive strategy along with conventional therapies,” explained Antonio Giordano, MD, PhD, Director of the Sbarro Institute for Molecular Medicine at Temple University in Philadelphia.

In the past, various components of tomatoes have been analyzed for their ability to counteract tumor growth in experimental systems, but few studies have analyzed the effects of tomatoes in their entirety.

“Distinct species may exert different effects, in different stages of a certain neoplasm,” added Ms. Barone.

To read more about this study, click here.

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