Stomach Cancer Can Be Treated With Tomato Extracts – Study

Loaded with a variety of beneficial nutrients and antioxidants, tomatoes are known to provide a great boost to health. Now a new study shows the staple of worldwide cuisine, tomato can help fight stomach cancer effectively.

With an abundance of antioxidants, nutrients as well as vitamins A and C and folic acid, this fruit that acts like a vegetable aids in improving eyesight and digestion, lowering blood pressure and cholesterol levels, removing toxins from the body as well as providing relief from diabetes and skin problems.

Researchers at the Oncology Research Centre of Mercogliano (CROM) in Italy now suggest tomatoes has potential to combat more deadly diseases like stomach cancer. They showed that whole tomato extracts inhibit gastric cancer cell growth and malignant cloning of the cancer cells.

According to the researchers, the extracts of certain tomato varieties have the capability to inhibit stomach cancer cells’ features of malignancy which can pave the way for novel therapies to treat the gastric cancer.

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

In their study, the researchers found that extracts of San Marzano and Corbarino tomato varieties found to inhibit the growth and cloning behaviour of stomach cancer cells which are malignant.

Treatment with these whole tomato extracts hampered primary processes within the cells interfering with their migration behavior, obstructing cell cycle, and ultimately leading to cancer cell death through apoptosis- the process of programmed cell death.

Researchers believe their findings could help develop strategies not only for prevention of gastric cancer, but as a support to conventional therapies as well.

“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,” said Antonio Giordano, Director of the Sbarro Institute for Molecular Medicine, Temple University and Professor of Pathology and Oncology at the University of Siena, Italy.

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

Although the rate of stomach cancer have gone down substantially in the past many decades due to positive lifestyle changes, it is still the fourth most common type of cancer worldwide. This deadly cancer has been associated with genetic causes, infection, smoking, and eating habits.

The study findings were published in the Journal of Cellular Physiology.