An ancient Chinese herb may hold the key to curing the same type of pancreatic cancer that afflicted Apple co-founder, Steve Jobs. It's surprisingly potent in zeroing in on cancer tumors too.
A new study found that the herb lei gong teng, which has long been used in traditional Chinese preparations, has a unique chemical composition that enables it to kill malignant tumors within days of exposure.
According to Ashok Saluja, vice chairman of research at the center, the herb's ability to kill cancerous cells is “unbelievably potent,” adding that lab mice tumors were decreasing within 40 days of treatment.
A new study published in the journal Science Translational Medicine has revealed that lei gong teng, also known as “thunder god vine,” possesses at least one unique compound capable of fully eradicating cancer tumors within 40 days, which could eventually make the herb a go-to alternative for treating cancer.
A research team from the University of Minnesota‘s Masonic Cancer Center discovered that, when given an injectable extract form of Tripterygium wilfordii, mice with pancreatic tumors experienced complete healing and recovery in fewer than five weeks. Even after discontinuing the treatment, the healed mice indefinitely maintained their healthy, cancer-free state with no signs of tumor resurgence or relapse.
The lei gong teng compound believed to be primarily responsible for killing cancer tumors is triptolide, an active diterpenoid that has been shown in several previous studies to exhibit broad anti-cancer activity. The team was able to effectively isolate this triptolide and convert it into a water soluble form, which researchers then injected into the mice regularly for a little more than one month, which was enough to cure the animals’ cancers.
Image courtesy of: Nelly Guaman