A unique seaweed extract shows promise for the treatment of Helicobacter pylori-related diseases and gastric cancer, according to new research undertaken at the University of Western Australia.
Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is a bacteria that infects more than half of the human population worldwide. Infection of this bacteria is a primary cause of chronic stomach inflammation, peptic ulcer diseases and gastric cancers, leading to more than one million deaths per year.
The study also showed fucoidan exhibited significant anti-cancer activity. Researchers found that the fucoidan extracts were profoundly toxic to human gastric cancer cells in vitro. Gastric cancer is the third-leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide, with H. pylori strongly associated to these cases.
The cytotoxic activity of fucoidan towards gastric cancer cells is extremely encouraging and illustrates a dual benefit of fucoidan. Not only can it remove the H. pylori bacteria from infected cells, but it can also induce stomach cancer cell death.
Interestingly, the fucoidan extract with the highest concentration of antioxidant compounds showed the strongest bioactivity.
The research involved testing fucoidan extracts derived from brown seaweed.
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