When it comes to fighting stomach cancer, these two varieties of tomato namely, San Marzano and Corbarino can be a lifesaver. Researchers from Italy and the United States found that theses tomatoes blocked the growth of stomach cancer cells and dampened their malignant characteristics.
Study co-author Prof. Antonio Giordano, director of the Sbarro Institute for Molecular Medicine at Temple University in Philadelphia, PA, and colleagues recently reported their findings in the Journal of Cellular Physiology.
Previous studies have suggested that compounds found in tomatoes – such as lycopene, a carotenoid that gives tomatoes their red colour – may help to fight cancer.
However, Prof. Giordano and colleagues note that few studies have investigated the anti-cancer effects of whole tomatoes – a research gap they set out to address with their new study.
Growth of stomach cancer cells halted with whole tomato extracts
To reach their findings, the researchers tested the effects of whole extracts from San Marzano and Corbarino tomatoes on stomach cancer cell lines.
They found that each extract not only halted the growth of gastric cancer cells, but they also interfered with cell migration – whereby cancer cells begin to move away from the primary tumour to invade surrounding tissues – and led to cancer cell death.
Furthermore, the researchers found that the anti-cancer effects of the tomato extracts were not down to one particular compound.
“Their anti-temporal effects seem not related to specific components, such as lycopene, but rather suggest that tomatoes should be considered in their entirety,” says study co-author Daniela Barone, of the Oncology Research Center of Mercogliano in Italy.
According to the researchers, their findings indicate that whole tomato extracts may be useful for the prevention and treatment of stomach cancer.
“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 Prof. Antonio Giordano.
The team notes that certain varieties of tomatoes may have different effects on cancer cells, something which future studies should investigate.
Source: Medical News Daily