Researchers from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in the United States have discovered that a molecule found in abundance in green tea could be the key for natural anti-cancer fighting.
The antioxidant molecule found in green tea called EGCG interacts with the protein p53, an important protein that is often dysfunctional in cancer and increases its levels.
“Both p53 and EGCG molecules are extremely interesting. Mutations in p53 are found in over 50% of human cancer, while EGCG is the major antioxidant in green tea, a popular beverage worldwide,” says Pr. Chunyu Wang, the corresponding author of the study.
According to the findings, the new-found understanding of how EGCG boosts the protein p53’s anti-cancer activity can contribute to the development of anticancer drugs with EGCG-like compounds. “By developing an understanding of the molecular-level mechanisms that control key biochemical interactions linked to devastating illnesses such as cancer and Alzheimer’s disease, Chunyu’s research is laying the groundwork for new and successful therapies,” says Curt Breneman, dean of the Rensselaer School of Science.