Cancer research: In vino veritas!

Scientists from Texas A&M University published new research, suggesting that a compound found in red wine could help prevent age-related memory loss. This is great news. We all heard about polyphenols in wine (e.g. condensed tannin), which have potent antioxidant properties. This time scientists focused on on of many polyphenols found in wine: resveratrol.

High quantities of resveratrol can be found in the skin of red grapes, blueberries, peanuts and cocoa. It is produced by these plants in response to injury, or when the plant is under attack by pathogens such as bacteria or fungi. Newest animal studies have demonstrated that in high enough quantities, resveratrol can have anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties. Also, it could play major role in preventing damage to blood vessels, reducing the amount of “bad” cholesterol in the body and preventing blood clots. We can hope, that in the context of current cancer research, the old Greek saying: “in wine there is truth”, could bear some promise. Let’s see how do the fields of polyphenols and resveratrol research stand against each other in the context of publishing frequency. How many publications were published about resveratrol compared to general polyphenol research?

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Truth is, that the number of publications for polyphenol is nearly two times higher than the number of publications for resveratrol. Out of, nearly 1500 studies of resveratrol effects on humans, nearly 900 evaluate it’s effects on cancer cells. This is a hot topic in cancer therapy development, especially in past few years. Top authors publishing in this paradigm are Thomas Szekeres and Norbert Latruffe. Countries with the highest number of published research papers are: USA, China and Italy. Click on the graph below to see the numbers of publications for each country.

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If you want to find out more about the effects resveratrol has, we suggest our Map View. With this tool you can easily target research topics related to the resveratrol research. On map below we can observe, that a lot of studies on resveratrol are concerned are considering it’s effect on prostate and breast cancer. Furthermore, a large body of recent literature has indicated resveratrol to be very potent inhibitor of tumor growth. We can see the cluster of literature around  keyword “p53” connecting resveratrol to the performance of  tumor suppressor gene-protein p53 and vast number of publications describing the resveratrol as relevant inhibitor of programmed cancer-cell death (i.e. keyword apoptosis). Such is the map of current research on resveratrol’s role in cancer treatment.

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What about the genrel research on polyphenols? We can see that “polyphenols” are studied more for their potential in treatment of vascular and neurodegenerative diseases. The topics related to resveratrol research paradigm, are those of prostate cancer treatment and  the general effects on inflammation prevention and treatment. We can also see, that resveratrol research accounts for a considerable portion of research into polyphenols. Given the growing body of evidence on resveratrol’s potential as active compound in next-gen cancer medication, we should conclude, that it’s a good trend to follow.

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