Green Tea - A secret Weapon Against Oral Cancer
Previous studies have shown that epigallocatechin -3- gallate (EGCG), the compound contained in green tea, kills cancer cells in the oral cavity, without harming normal cells. However, it was not known why this occurs. Researchers from the University of Pennsylvania found: EGCG starts the process leading to th death of cells in the mitochondria of cancer cells.
It seems that EGCG in cancer cells induces the formation of reactive oxygen species. Mitochondria are damaged and begin to produce more reactive oxygen forms. At this time, the tumor cells decrease the expression of genes of the antioxidant system, and weaken the protective function .
I.e., cancer cell turns off its protective mechanism at the moment when EGCG creates oxidative stress. In normal cells, EGCG will not start such a process . This compound, in contrast, activates the protective function of the cells.
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