Botanical synergy may slow colon cancers

Curcumin and boswellia act together to fight colon cancer, according to new research

Two powerful extracts are even stronger together in fighting colon cancer, according to new research. A turmeric and frankincense (boswellia) combo was so effective it began squashing tumor growth as early as the second day of administration, according to a release from Baylor University Medical Center, where the animal study was conducted. The journal Cancer Prevention Research published the results, which were noted on

"We've known for a while that curcumin and boswellia are powerful anti-inflammatories and have potent anti-cancer properties. They are both powerful natural medicines, and both have the ability to reduce inflammation," the study’s lead author, Ajay Goel, director of epigenetics, cancer prevention, and geonomics at Baylor told

A Baylor study published last year suggests curcumin may have a unique ability to kill cancer stem cells. Goel decided to combine the two because curcumin impacts only certain pathways in cells that reduce inflammation, but leaves other pathways untouched. Similarly, boswellia reduces inflammation, using different pathways. "I thought if we combined the two, we might hit even more pathways, and that's what happened,” he said.

In the animal model of colorectal cancer used in the study, the researchers observed that the botanicals influences tumor growth by the second or third day of administration.

"I think this combination may be the Holy Grail for preventing colon cancer," said Goel.

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