1Integrative Medicine Program, 2Department of Molecular Pathology, 3Department of Melanoma Medical Oncology, The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX, USA;
4P. Banerji Homeopathic Research Foundation, Kolkata, India Received May 28, 2009; Accepted July 23, 2009 DOI: 10.3892/ijo_00000512
Abstract. The use of ultra-diluted natural products in the management of disease and treatment of cancer has generated a lot of interest and controversy. We conducted an in vitro study to determine if products prescribed by a clinic in India have any effect on breast cancer cell lines. We studied four ultra-diluted remedies (Carcinosin, Phytolacca, Conium and Thuja) against two human breast adenocarcinoma cell lines (MCF-7 and MDA-MB-231) and a cell line derived from immortalized normal human mammary epithelial cells (HMLE). The remedies exerted preferential cytotoxic effects against the two breast cancer cell lines, causing cell cycle delay/arrest and apoptosis. These effects were accompanied by altered expression of the cell cycle regulatory proteins, including downregulation of phosphorylated Rb and upregulation of the CDK inhibitor p27, which were likely responsible for the cell cycle delay/arrest as well as induction of the apoptotic cascade that manifested in the activation of caspase 7 and cleavage of PARP in the treated cells. The findings demonstrate biological activity of these natural products when presented at ultra-diluted doses. Further in- depth studies with additional cell lines and animal models are warranted to explore the clinical applicability of these agents.
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