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Prostate Cancer, Antioxidants and The Genes

New research has discovered how greater levels of selenium, vitamin E and lycopene in 25 percent of Caucasian males -- those who have a specific gene that's sensitive to oxidative stress -- reduce prostate cancer. So much so, this subsection of men with that specific genetic variation who consume low levels of these protective antioxidants may increase their risk of prostate cancer exponentially, by a factor of 10.

These results were based on an analysis of 567 men diagnosed with prostate cancer between 1982-95, and 764 cancer-free men.

Researchers reviewed variants for the gene that codes for manganese superoxide dismutatase (MnSOD), an important enzyme that works as an antioxidant in human cells to defend against disease. The MnSOD gene is passed from parents to offspring in one of three forms: VV, VA or AA. In other words, men with the AA genotype appear to be particularly susceptible to prostate cancer if their antioxidant levels are low, researchers said.

Compared to VV or VA carriers with low selenium, AA males had an 89 percent greater risk for developing aggressive prostate cancer if blood levels for selenium were low. Conversely, AA carriers with high selenium had a 65 percent lower risk than VV or VA males who maintained low levels of selenium.

Even more promising: The contrast in relative risk was most pronounced for men who had high blood levels for all three antioxidants combined.

Maintaining high levels of these antioxidants account for a good deal of the preventative measures men can use to fight or prevent prostate cancer. You'll also want to consider incorporating these other natural tools too:

For men suffering from prostate cancer, I also strongly urge you to review the treatment regimen offered by noted expert Dr. Larry Clapp, in an article I posted last week.

EurekAlert March 15, 2005

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