by Lori Alton
Those bright yellow weeds blooming all over suburban lawns each spring may soon be known as more than just a springtime nuisance. A proposed clinical study will look at the potential cancer-killing properties of dandelion root extract in hopes of mirroring the promising results already seen in lab studies.
Dr. Siyaram Pandey, professor of chemistry and biochemistry, University of Windsor, and principal research investigator on the project, is recruiting 30 cancer patients to take part in the study, which will take place at the Windsor Regional Cancer Centre. The clinical trial follows lab studies in which dandelion tea, containing dandelion root extract, showed promise in the fight against cancer.
The benefits of dandelion tea revealed
Dandelion tea has been prized for years by proponents of natural and alternative health remedies for a number of reasons. It has been shown to enhance detoxification, by stimulating urination and replacing the potassium lost in the process.
Even more noteworthy, dandelion tea is widely known as a potent disease-fighter, credited with boosting the body’s immune system and helping the body to heal, while combating heart disease, combating cancer and reducing the effects of aging.
Scientific studies highlight the power dandelion tea
The proposed clinical study, which will take place at the Windsor Regional Cancer Centre, will involve patients with end stage blood-related cancers, such as lymphoma and leukemia. The study will address the question of whether results of the clinical trial will mimic the earlier lab test results, where dandelion tea containing dandelion root extract was shown to kill cancer cells.
During the lab tests, researchers studied the effects of the dandelion tea formula on a number of commercially available leukemia cells. The team found that the dandelion tea caused cancer cells to destroy themselves, known as apoptosis.
As part of the process, the research team created a new company, Windsor Botanical Therapeutics, in order to gain the ability to form a contract with a licensed Health Canada drug manufacturer for the purpose of creating the dandelion extract that can be used clinically.
Dr. Pandey says the first phase of the clinical study is part of the overall Dandelion Root Project, an effort designed to bring to light the scientific evidence for using dandelion root extract and other natural health products in a safe, effective way to combat cancer.
Is Canada going to set an example for the rest of the world?
This phase of the clinical trials already have the blessing of Health Canada in 2012. The end goal of this early stage will be primarily to determine the correct dose necessary to impact cancer cells.
The research got under way after Dr. Pandey was approached by an oncologist who noticed that cancer patients drinking dandelion tea were improving. The results have been promising enough to attract financial support via grants from philanthropists.
Only time will tell if this information can get out to the general public. There are many people – within the pharmaceutical industry – that want to keep the public in the dark. It’s up to each and every one of us to spread the word. People need to learn more about the healing power of dandelion tea plus many other substances within the plant kingdom.