Black raspberries and fenretinide could be the secrets to treating oral cancer.
Researchers at the Ohio State University College of Dentistry recently made the discovery. The research team was conducting tests on possible new treatments that can lower the risk of cancer coming back after treatment.
Oral cancer cases have been rising in the last several years and research indicates that one third of oral cancer patients experience some type of recurrence even after cancerous lesions have been taken out of the throat or mouth.
Dr. Susan Mallery from the Ohio State University College of Dentistry was working with Peter Hansen and Gary Stoner from the department of Medicine at the Medical College of Wisconsin. The study involved a topical gel made from freeze-dried black raspberries. In the study, the gel was applied to precancerous oral lesions and the data showed that the patients benefited in some way.
The team will soon go forward with molecular analysis to focus on the role of genes that control cell growth. A problem, however, for the research team is trying to pinpoint the precancerous lesions that could become cancerous lesions.
Based on information known about berry compound function, the raspberries are effective because they prevent damaged cells from continuing to divide.
If all goes well, the researchers may be able to create mouthwashes and gels that contain the berry compound in some type of concoction that cannot be permeated.