Blueberries play big role in endometrial cancer natural therapy trials

UNIQUE STUDY EXPLORES THE POTENTIAL OF BLUEBERRIES NATURAL COMPOUNDS IN FIGHTING CANCER

Due to the numerous comorbidities common in patients with endometrial cancer, such as diabetes mellitus and hypertension, there is an urgent need for nontoxic therapies. This inspired a research study at City of Hope to find a safer, more effective supplement to enhance the activity of the standard therapeutic option using megestrol acetate, which has only a 20–30% response rate.

In this study, led by our assistant professor at the Division of Gynecologic Oncology, Thanh Dellinger, M.D., a team of our researchers discovered that a natural dietary compound known as pterostilbene, which is found in blueberries, can potentially inhibit cancer cell growth as shown in vitro. Additionally, the combination of pterostilbene with megestrol acetate in a 1 to 1 ratio produced a strong synergic anti-tumor effect.

This discovery paved the way for a phase 2 trial assessing the effect of megestrol acetate plus pterostilbene versus megestrol alone on tumor proliferation during the preoperative window in patients with endometrial cancer. This trial is now enrolling adult patients with either endometrial carcinoma or endometrial pre-cancer who are candidates for hysterectomy.

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