Does Milk Have Cancer-Protecting Properties?

Many cancer survivors and others interesting in health avoid milk and when I had lung cancer in 1974 milk was prohibited on my cancer diet. However, a new study published in the Journal of Dairy Science concluded that lactoferricin4-14  (Lfcin4-14), a milk protein with known health benefits, significantly reduced the growth rate of colon cancer cells over time by prolonging the period of the cell cycle  before chromosomes were replicated and they recently found that treatment with Lfcin4-14 reduced DNA damage in colon cancer cells exposed to ultraviolet (UV) light. Although the differences in the subjects vs controls were small they were significant.

In the study researchers exposed colon cancer cells to UV light that cause DNA damage and then grew the cells in the presence or absence of Lfcin4-14. Using a sensitive technique they evaluated the results in which DNA cells damaged by UV light resembled a comet with a tail and the intensity of the tail compared to the head of the comet indicated the number of DNA breaks. UV light exposure resulted in an increase in the number of comets in colon cancer cells without Lfcin4-14 while those treated with Lfcin4-14 had reduced numbers of comets in UV light exposed cells. The researchers said “Our data suggest that the effects of Lfcin4-14 in prolonging the cell cycle may contribute to the cancer prevention effect of milk. This must be further investigated in different systems. ?

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