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Health News Archive 41 - Cancer (con't)
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EGCG from Green Tea Kills Leukemia Cells

Researchers at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, N.Y. have found a component in green tea that helps kill cells of the most common leukemia.

Research using laboratory cell cultures showed that a component of green tea known as epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) helps kill lymphocytic leukemia cells by interrupting the communication signals they need to survive.

The leukemia cells studied were from patients with B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), most often diagnosed in patients in their mid-to-late 60s.

Currently, there is no cure for CLL, though chemotherapy is administered in the most severe cases.

The Mayo Clinic study, led by Dr. Neil E. Kay, showed that green tea's EGCG interrupted survival signals, prompting leukemia cells to die in eight of 10 patient samples tested in the laboratory. 

Source: Lee YK, Bone ND, Strege AK, Jelinek DF, Kay NE. VEGF Receptor Phosphorylation Status and Apoptosis is Modulated by a Green Tea Component, Epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) in B cell Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia. Blood. 2004 Mar 2.  The findings are reported in an early electronic article in the journal Blood http://www.bloodjournal.org/cgi/reprint/2003-08-2763v1 

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