Can Resveratrol Prevent Prostate Cancer?

Saturday, August 08, 2009
By: Byron J. Richards,
Board Certified Clinical Nutritionist

Resveratrol is repeatedly in the headlines as a potent anti-aging nutrient and I have written about this extensively in my article, Is Resveratrol the Fountain of Youth?  A new cell study shows that resveratrol1 can block the transition of cancer cells into the form that becomes aggressive prostate cancer that is more likely to kill.

This study builds on earlier prostate cancer cell research2 that showed prostate cancer cell suppression and the induction of death signals in various types of prostate cancer cells.  The new research shows that resveratrol communicates to the core gene signal, NF-kappaB, turning it down so as to turn down the key molecular mechanism involved in the progression of prostate cancer (the overexpression of NF-kappaB).

In addition to this specific action of resveratrol in prostate cancer cells, resveratrol is now in wide-ranging research for general cancer prevention.

As I have previously pointed out, the common doses of resveratrol that show benefit and safety in animal studies range from 2.5 mg – to 10 mg per kilogram.  This translates to an approximate dose range of 150 mg – 700 mg per day for a 150 pound adult, a sensible and safe dose range until more data is in.

It is generally assumed that most nutrients have inherent wisdom, meaning that they can help knock out cancer cells while keeping healthy cells alive – which is certainly true for resveratrol.  However, it is possible that very high doses of resveratrol3 may be able to induce cell death in healthy cells instead of the generally assumed anti-aging benefit.  Until more human data is in, I would keep the dose to no more than 1000 mg per day.


Referenced Studies:
  1. ^ Resveratrol and Prostate Cancer  Anticancer Res.  Hsieh TC.
  2. ^ Resveratrol as an Anti-Cancer Nutrient  Arch Biochem Biophys.  Athar M, Back JH, Kopelovich L, Bickers DR, Kim AL.
  3. ^ Resveratrol and Cell Death  Mol Nutr Food Res.  Shakibaei M, Harikumar KB, Aggarwal BB.

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