Researchers from the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center have found that ginger not only kills cancer cells, it also prevents them from building up resistance to cancer treatment. Ginger is already used as an effective remedy for nausea and inflammation.

The scientists are presenting their results in a poster session at the American Association for Cancer Research annual meeting.

In this study, scientists applied a solution of ginger powder and water to ovarian cancer cells (similar ginger powder to what is sold at grocery stores, only a standardized research grade). In every single one of their tests they found that the cancer cells died as a result of being in contact with the ginger solution – they either committed suicide (apoptosis) or they digested/attacked themselves (autophagy).

If ginger can cause autophagy as well as apoptosis, it can prevent resistance to chemotherapy – something that is a common development with ovarian cancer patients.

Whether or not this brings the same encouraging results in animal studies remains to be seen, say the researchers.

Another great advantage of ginger is that there are hardly any reports of side effects. It is also an easy product to present in capsule form.

The researchers stressed that this is a preliminary study and further research is needed.

Over 20,000 American women are expected to be diagnosed with ovarian cancer this year. 15,000 women are expected to die from ovarian cancer this year (in the USA).

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This study was funded by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine and the National Institutes of Health.

Written by: Christian Nordqvist
Editor: Medical News Today