Mango extracts may prevent or stop cancer growth in certain breast and colon cells, according to a study conducted by Texas AgriLife Research food scientists.

In a study conducted by Drs. Susanne and Steve Talcott, mango polyphenol extracts were tested in vitro on colon, breast, lung, and prostate cancers and leukemia. Further test were conducted on the colon cancer cell lines because of the small molecules that are readily absorbed in mangos and the larger molecules that would not be absorbed and thus remain present in a colon.

The results revealed that mango showed some impact on leukemia and lung  and prostate cancers but was most effective on the most common breast and colon cancers. “What we found is that not all cell lines are sensitive to the same extent to an anticancer agent,” Dr Steve Talcott stated. “But the breast and colon cancer lines underwent apoptosis, or programmed cell death. Additionally, we found that when we tested normal colon cells side by side with the colon cancer cells, that the mango polyphenolics did not harm the normal cells.”

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Dr Susanne Talcott explained that it is crucial information to learn that the cell cycle was interrupted because it indicates a possible mechanism for how the cancer cells are prevented or stopped.

“For cells that may be on the verge of mutating or being damaged, mango polyphenolics prevent this kind of damage,” Dr Susanne Talcott added.