Love coffee? If the findings of a latest study are to be believed, your favourite morning drink may help delay risk of prostate cancer. The findings could help pave way for treating drug-resistant cancer according to researchers. The study was carried by scientists from Kanazawa University in Japan who identified kahweol acetate and cafestol- hydrocarbon compounds naturally found in Arabica coffee -- which may inhibit growth of prostate cancer.
The pilot study presented at the European Association of Urology Congress in Barcelona, suggested that kahweol acetate and cafestol could play a role in inhibiting growth in cells that are resistant to common anti-cancer drugs like Cabazitaxel.
"We found that kahweol acetate and cafestol inhibited growth of cancer cells in mice, but the combination seemed to work synergistically, leading to a significantly slower tumour growth than in untreated mice," said lead author Hiroaki Iwamoto.
The team tested six compounds that are naturally found in coffee, on proliferation of human prostate cancers cells in vitro (i.e. in a petri-dish). The findings revealed that cells treated with kahweol acetate and cafestol grew more slowly than controls. They then tested these compounds on prostate cancer cells, transplanted to mice (16 mice).
"After 11 days, the untreated tumours had grown by around three and a half times the original volume (342 per cent), whereas tumours in the mice treated with both compounds had grown by just over one and a half (167 per cent) times the original size," Iwamoto said.
The growth reduction in transplanted tumour cells were much prominent that in native tumour cells.
Although "these are promising findings, but they should not make people change their coffee consumption," cautioned Professor Atsushi Mizokami from the varsity.
"Coffee can have both positive and negative effects. We need to find out more about the mechanisms behind these findings before we can think about clinical applications. But if we can confirm these results, we may have candidates to treat drug-resistant prostate cancer," Mizokami noted.
(With inputs IANS)