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Frontiers in cancer prevention research.

Department of Clinical Cancer Prevention, The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas 77030-4009, USA.
Cancer Research (Impact Factor: 9.28). 10/2003; 63(18):5649-55.
Source: PubMed
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    ABSTRACT: The design of new antineoplastic agents that can halt the progression of human malignancies with minimal systemic damage has been emerging in recent years, with COX-2 as a major tar- get molecule. With an aim to demonstrate the expression and role of COX-2, the principal puta- tive target of COX-2 inhibitor therapy, in endometrial adenocarcinoma (EACA) and precursor lesions, atypical complex hyperplasia (ACH) and endometrial hyperplasia (EH), we carried out an immunohistochemical (IHC) analysis of 22 primary human EACAs and 14 precursor lesions. Relevant clinico-pathologic data were tabulated from a random computer-generated sample of 22 primary EACA patients, treated by hysterectomy at our institution. Representative tumor sec- tions including adjacent precursor lesions and normal endometrium (NE) were immunostained with human monoclonal anti-COX-2. Qualitative and semi-quantitative COX-2 IHC staining scores were determined based on the proportion of immunoreactive cells and the intensity of cytoplasmic COX-2 expression. Fisher's exact test and the Wilcoxon Rank Sum Test were used for statistical analysis. Mean patient age was 68 yr. (range 51-93). All 22 EACAs were of endometrioid type, of which 10 (45%) were grade I, 8 (36%) grade II and 4 (18%) were grade III. Overall, 4 of 9 (44%) EHs, 4 of 5 (80%) ACHs, and 18 of 22 (88%) EACAs were COX-2 pos- itive. Mean COX-2 IHC scores for EH and EACAs were 33 (SD 24.11) and 76 (SD 54.57) respec- tively (p = 0.022). Strong or moderate COX-2 expression was observed in 17 of 22 (77%) ade- nocarcinomas as compared to 2 of 14 (14%) of precursor lesions (EH and ACH). Areas of ade- nomyosis were COX-2 +, while myometrial smooth muscle and normal fallopian tube tissues stained negative for COX-2. The demonstration of frequent and strong expression of COX-2 in human EACAs supports a possible role for COX-2 inhibitors in EACAs. Furthermore, an increas- ing expression of COX-2 from EH to invasive EACAs suggests potential usefulness of COX-2 inhi- bition to halt the progression of precursor lesions to invasive endometrial cancers.
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    ABSTRACT: Modern cancer therapies have significantly prolonged the life of the average cancer patient, but still have not succeeded in reducing cancer mortality in certain types of cancer. Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), which is not a mainstream therapy, has introduced a new element of hope. CAM encompasses a wide spectrum of modalities, practices, theories and beliefs and is based upon dietary supplements, herbal products, and other natural products as defined by The US National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Extensive research in the last few years has revealed that regular consumption of certain fruits and vegetables can reduce the risk of acquiring specific cancers. Phytochemicals derived from such fruits and vegetables, referred to as chemopreventive agents; include tannins, coumarins, lignans, quinones, stilbenes, curcuminoids, flavonoids and other groups of substances. Various edible and medicinal plants have been extensively studied for their ability to inhibit tumor development. The use of traditional medicines is therefore, quite common in developing countries and is spreading rapidly in developed countries. The Arabian Gulf region has a long tradition of herbal therapies. Herbal medicine constitutes a significant part of this region's heritage and until recently functioned as its main health-care system. Interestingly, medicinal plants from the Arab region have received little international attention. In the botanical literature there are 600 known plant species in UAE, 1204 in Oman, 2250 in Saudi Arabia, 2088 in Egypt and 2367 in Palestine. Less than 10% of these plants has been screened for their medicinal potential. In the Arabian region, medicinal use is well established for Plantago major, Plantago lanceolata and Commiphora myrrha as anti-tumor remedies. Here, we present an up-to-date review of Arabian medicinal plants known for their anti-cancer activities.

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Anita L Sabichi