Melanoma of the skin has become the prevalent form of cancer seen in North Americans from ages 25 to 29. It is resistant to most of the standard therapies, including radiation therapy and chemotherapy.
Dandelion root (Tarraxacum officinale) is an herb known to be anti-inflammatory, anti-angiogenic and antioxidant. It is a frequently-used detoxifier used in liver disease, and is known to have little toxicity to normal cells. The synergy (working together) of the components of dandelion root is considered important and explains why isolated components do not work as well.
Dandelion root extract (DRE) has been shown by Chatterjee, et al, to induce apoptosis (cell suicide) in melanoma cells without harm to normal cells. Early stages of apoptosis can be seen within 48 hours of treating melanoma cells with DRE. DRE is seen to target the cell mitochondria as early as 24 hours after DRE treatment.
“Dandelion root extract has been resolved into components using chromatography techniques; however, singular components themselves may not be enough to trigger a chemotherapeutic response in a chemoresistant cancer. Components may require each other to work in unison or even synergy which is possibly why they have been effective as extracts to traditional medicine.”
People taking an anti-diabetic drug, metformin, are known to have lower rates of cancer and a better response to therapy in breast cancer. One type of melanoma cell was resistant to DRE, but responded when metformin was added to treatment. Cancer cells have very specific energy needs and metformin interferes with that energy production.
CONCLUSION: Treatment with common dandelion root extract has been successful in causing melanoma cell death by apoptosis. Normal cells are not altered. Dandelion is chemopreventive and chemotherapeutic.
NOTE: Read about dandelion as a part of a herbal combination to protect the liver from Roundup herbicide. Read about the anit-viral effects of dandelion root.
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