In research published in the journal Aging, (See below for the reference) a team from the Biomedical Research Centre at the University of Salford, used metabolic phenotyping on cell lines of breast cancer stem cells and found that green tea Matcha “shifted cancer cells towards a quiescent metabolic state” and stopped their spread at a relatively low concentration (0.2 mg/ml).
They also found that the signalling pathways that promote cancer stem cells indicated that Matcha “strongly affected mTOR signals, weakening components of the 40S ribosome. This raised the possibility that Matcha (Green Tea Match or GTM) could be used in place of chemical drugs such as rapamycin”. (Exhibit A)
Up until recently, the anti-cancer molecular mechanism of matcha have been confusing. However, with this study, by using metabolic phenotyping, it was found that the matcha tea is suppressing oxidative mitochondrial metabolism in cancer cells, which means that it is preventing the cells from ‘re-fuelling’ and therefore they become inactive and die a natural apoptotic death.
“Our results are consistent with the idea that Matcha may have significant therapeutic potential, mediating the metabolic reprogramming of cancer cells.” (Ibid)
There are multiple signaling pathways involved. MGT-treated cells display an increase in the beta-oxidation pathway, most likely in an attempt to compensate for the decreased mitochondrial respiration and glycolysis. IPA analysis of proteomics data detected alterations in cell cycle regulation after treatment with MGT. The p53 tumour suppressor protein, which is a transcription factor, stabilized and activated in response to a range of cellular stresses including hyper-proliferation. This study also demonstrated that treatment with MGT up-regulates the enzymes of the oxidative branch of the pentose phosphate pathway. So that’s pretty keen. Furthermore, IPA analysis showed that treatment with MGT affected the IL-8 pathway. IL-8 signaling is involved in angiogenesis, proliferation and increment of the migratory capacity of cancer cells, in particular cancer stem cells.
Stem cells are the body’s basic raw materials out of which specialized cells are generated: blood cells, brain cells, and bone marrow for example. Cancer stem cells come from stem cells.. Chemotherapy and drugs can be targeted to attack the tumor cells in a growing variety of ways. The general principle is to persuade them to commit suicide—apoptosis—by interfering with the messages that regulate their interaction with other cells. Howeverr, the traditional pharmacopeia and chemo don’t kill off the stem cells. The tumor shrinks but over time it grows back. (See Blog under cancer stem cell)
The matcha study is the part of the field of molecular biogenetics that is generally called the Stem Cell Theory as to the role of stem cells in cancer growth and the design of CSC therapies is still debated, notwithstanding hard evidence that they are the engines of metastases (See Blog). There is a great deal of debate about their origin, structure and organization, how they grow and stop growing, de-differentiation, clonal evolution and stochastic alternative theories, mutations, response to extra-cellular signals and more.
Over the past years, the anti-cancer stem cell properties of green tea or its components have been investigated. Its effectiveness is reported across several types of tumor. Previous studies have reported that green tea and epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), one of the main components of green tea, suppresses cancer stem-like cells (CSCs) properties in a variety of cellular models (1-3)
This study we have before the Court of expertise was aimed to investigate if the inhibitory efficacy of MGT on CSCs is associated with inhibition of cellular metabolism. The results presented demonstrate beyond any reasonable doubt that MGT preferentially inhibits CSC proliferative expansion derived from MCF7 breast cancer cells.
Conclusion and the ACR Institute’s Human Clinical Trial Project
The study’s conclusion, in pertinent part, is as follows:
“In summary, we found that the natural compound Matcha green tea mechanistically targets oxidative phosphorylation and therefore CSC propagation. Importantly, we demonstrated that MGT effectively down-regulated oxygen consumption rate (OCR) and extracellular acidification rate (ECAR). Moreover, MGT treatment impaired others cellular metabolic pathways, and several cell signaling pathways such as cell cycle regulation, antioxidant response and inflammation. Altogether, these findings strongly propose MGT as a natural compound that may help to overcome cancer cell resistance to chemotherapy”.
This Matcha study is great news because its therapeutic molecules target the engine of metastases, the cancer stem cells. As the Institute has been saying for decades, both chemo and radiation are instrincally and structurally flawed in that they not only dont destroy these CSCs, they also reinforce them. (See Blog) Hence the cancer reccurence and chemo-resistance.
From the viewpoint of compelling hard evidence, this study has its limits. It cell lines were experimented within Petri dishes, so we have a long way to go before clinical human trials are financed and published. At the Institute’s French retreat center, we have nonetheless clinical experience that organic matcha appears to help lots with regard to cancer control and reversal. But because the Institute’s lifestyle holistic protocol that we are trying to verify via a human clinical trial involves so many other variables that it is not possible to attribute its success to this or that compound. With this study, we now have additional proof that Matcha tea, globally, with its many tea’s molecules, from EGCG to other phenolic compounds, modulates the growth of recurring stem cancer cells in Petri dishes. This is a good start.
Ch. J. (ACR Institute director)
1. Chung SS, Vadgama JV. Curcumin and epigallocatechin gallate inhibit the cancer stem cell phenotype via down-regulation of STAT3-NFκB signaling. Anticancer Res. 2015; 35:39–46. [PubMed]
2. Kumazoe M, Takai M, Hiroi S, Takeuchi C, Yamanouchi M, Nojiri T, Onda H, Bae J, Huang Y, Takamatsu K, Yamashita S, Yamada S, Kangawa K, et al. PDE3 inhibitor and EGCG combination treatment suppress cancer stem cell properties in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma. Sci Rep. 2017; 7:1917. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-02162-9 [PubMed]
3. Fujiki H, Sueoka E, Rawangkan A, Suganuma M. Human cancer stem cells are a target for cancer prevention using (-)-epigallocatechin gallate. J Cancer Res Clin Oncol. 2017; 143:2401–12. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00432-017-2515-2 [PubMed]
“Matcha green tea (MGT) is a natural product that is currently used as a dietary supplement and may have significant anti-cancer properties. However, the molecular mechanism(s) underpinning its potential health benefits remain largely unknown. Here, we used MCF7 cells (an ER(+) human breast cancer cell line) as a model system, to systematically dissect the effects of MGT at the cellular level, via i) metabolic phenotyping and ii) unbiased proteomics analysis. Our results indicate that MGT is indeed sufficient to inhibit the propagation of breast cancer stem cells (CSCs), with an IC-50 of ~0.2 mg/ml, in tissue culture. Interestingly, metabolic phenotyping revealed that treatment with MGT is sufficient to suppress both oxidative mitochondrial metabolism (OXPHOS) and glycolytic flux, shifting cancer cells towards a more quiescent metabolic state. Unbiased label-free proteomics analysis identified the specific mitochondrial proteins and glycolytic enzymes that were down-regulated by MGT treatment. Moreover, to discover the underlying signalling pathways involved in this metabolic shift, we subjected our proteomics data sets to bio-informatics interrogation via Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA) software. Our results indicate that MGT strongly affected mTOR signalling, specifically down-regulating many components of the 40S ribosome. This raises the intriguing possibility that MGT can be used as inhibitor of mTOR, instead of chemical compounds, such as rapamycin. In addition, other key pathways were affected, including the anti-oxidant response, cell cycle regulation, as well as interleukin signalling. Our results are consistent with the idea that MGT may have significant therapeutic potential, by mediating the metabolic reprogramming of cancer cells”. (Source)
Matcha green tea (MGT) inhibits the propagation of cancer stem cells (CSCs) by targeting mitochondrial metabolism, glycolysis and multiple cell signalling pathways is published in Aging and authored by Gloria Bonuccelli, Federica Sotgia and Michael P Lisanti (Source)
Selective List of Green Tea and Cancer Research
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