U.S. researchers have reported that mangoes have been able to prevent or stop certain colon and breast cancer cells in laboratory experiments.
Scientists at Texas A&M tested polyphenol extracts originating in the fruit on breast, colon, lung and prostate cancers. While the extract was somewhat effective on lung and prostate cancers, it had a significant impact preventing or even stopping abnormal growth in breast and colon tumor cells.
"What we found is that not all cell lines are sensitive to the same extent to an anticancer agent," said Susanne Talcott, co-author of the study.
"But the breast and colon cancer lines underwent apotosis, or programmed cell death," she added. "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."
While researchers admit that mangoes have about four times less antioxidant capacity than wine grapes, they feel it is still a high quality superfood that would be good to include as part of a regular diet.
The next step for scientists is to conduct a clinical trial with participants who have a high risk of developing cancer.