Here’s a post I have been promising for a while now. Let’s look at Luteolin, a practically anonymous, food-derived agent with numerous possible uses in cancer treatment.
Nobody has heard of Luteolin. That is because the research being done in its potential anti-cancer application is really new.
What is it anyway? Luteolin is a bioflavonoid that is found in artichokes, peanut hulls, green pepper, chrysanthemums, citrus, and many other natural plant sources.
Here is one of the cool things Luteolin is capable of: mast cell stabilization.
Whoa… mast cells? Some dog lovers have heard of mast cell tumors, or may even be dealing with this diagnosis in their loved canine companion. Mast cells, when doing normal things, secrete chemical signals that are involved in some kinds of inflammation.
Inflammation is a normal part of the body’s defense system. However, like most things in excess, more is not better.
When mast cells in the body secrete too much of their chemical signals, the outcome is redness, swelling, itching and burning. You get allergic reactions, excessive stomach acid secretion, dilated blood vessels, elevated heart rate, shock, and sometimes even death.
In dog cancer care, we deal with tumors made out of cancerous mast cells. These cells maintain their ability to send out these noxious chemical signals. Dogs with severe mast cell tumor burdens have things like excessive stomach acid, inflammation in the skin, and physical discomfort due to the nastiness of the excessive histamine, heparin, and substance P released by mast cells.
But why not just give Benadryl or cimetidine to block these effects? Why not reach for these common meds without pause?
Well, luteolin has some very nice anti-inflammatory effects, and some good potential anticancer effects, which we will go into in next time…so stay tuned…..