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Research Summaries from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Thalidomide Workshop

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   [April 5, 2000]

  [Tues. Oct. 28]

Press Releases

"These results strongly suggest that ginger compounds may be effective chemopreventive and/or chemotherapeutic agents for colorectal carcinomas," said Bode. Because mice were not allowed to live with tumors bigger than one cubic centimeter, "it's difficult to know if the ginger-treated mice would have lived longer if left to die of their tumors, but it looks that way," she said.

Preliminary results also suggested that tumors in the control  mice had spread, or metastasized, more than tumors in the [6]-gingerol mice, but whether a significant difference actually exists remains to be verified, Bode said.

In these experiments, mice were fed ginger before and after tumor cells were administered. In their next round of experiments, the researchers plan to feed ginger to mice only after they have grown tumors to a certain size.

"The new experiments should be more clinically relevant," said Bode. "They will get at the question of whether a patient could eat ginger to slow the metastasis of a nonoperable tumor."

The University of Minnesota has applied for a patent on the use of [6]-gingerol as an anti-cancer agent,and the technology has been licensed to Pediatric Pharmaceuticals (Iselin, NJ). The work was supported by the Hormel Foundation and Pediatric Pharmaceuticals.