Secret to breast milk's anti-cancer activity revealed

   Apr 24, 11:38 am

Washington, April 24 (ANI): The role of breast milk in protection against various forms of cancer has been known, but what makes it do so has remained a mystery.

Now, a new study has found high levels of cancer-fighting TNF-related apoptosis inducing ligand (TRAIL) in human milk, which might be one source of breast milk's anticancer activity.

Researchers took samples of colostrum, the first milk available to newborns, and of mature breast milk from new mothers. Researchers then obtained samples of blood from healthy women, and various ready-to-feed infant formulas.

The colostrum, mature breast milk, blood and formula were then all tested to measure their level of TRAIL.

The researchers found that colostrum and breast milk contained 400- and 100-fold, respectively, higher levels of TRAIL than blood. No TRAIL was detected in the formula.

"The important role of breastfeeding in the prevention of certain childhood cancers, such as lymphoblastic leukemia, Hodgkin's disease, and neuroblastoma, has been previously demonstrated," the researchers wrote.

"However, endogenous soluble TRAIL represents a strong candidate to explain the overall biological effect of breastfeeding against cancer," they stated.

Mothers chosen to participate in the study were eligible because they exhibited no signs of eclampsia, infection, or fever, and delivered healthy newborns at term.

"To our knowledge, this is the first time that TRAIL has been measured in colostrum and human breast milk. This study has revealed much higher TRAIL concentrations in colostrum and breast milk compared to the levels of circulating serum TRAIL," the researchers concluded.

The study appeared in the Journal of Human Lactation published by SAGE. (ANI)

DNA reveals Neanderthals first mated with humans 50,000 years ago Oct 23, 2:20 pm
Washington, Oct 23 (ANI): A new study has examined the 45,000-year-old DNA from a Siberian man that has demonstrated that Neanderthals and humans first mated 50,000 years ago.
Full Story
How brain remains stable during learning process Oct 23, 1:46 pm
Washington, Oct 23 (ANI): A new mathematical model has provided scientists with a deeper insight into how brain remains stable during the learning process.
Full Story
Skin patches may soon succeed syringes to diagnose diseases Oct 23, 12:41 pm
Washington, Oct 23 (ANI): Scientists have been working on creating skin patches, which would be less painful alternative for disease diagnosis and could one day replace the syringes.
Full Story
Soon, fuel from waste of 'whisky-making' to be reality Oct 23, 12:41 pm
Washington, Oct 23 (ANI): Researchers have been working to turn the waste from whisky-making into fuel and ultimately planning to make it a commercial reality, it has been reported.
Full Story
Comments

LATEST STORIES
TOP VIDEO STORIES
PHOTO GALLERY