Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Study At Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Investigates Possible Protective Effects Of Plant Compounds On The Uterus

Date:
August 24, 1999
Source:
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
Summary:
Researchers at the Center for Women’s Health at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center are launching a clinical trial to assess whether eating certain plant compounds can have positive effects on the lining of the uterus. These plant compounds, called “isoflavones,” are found in particularly high amounts in clover and soybeans. The study is open to women between 45 and 50 years of age who are in good health, still having menstrual cycles, and not currently taking hormone replacement therapy or the oral contraceptive. Those interested may call 310-855-3291 or 310-855-7432 for details on additional requirements and benefits of participation.

LOS ANGELES (July 29, 1999) -- Researchers at the Center for Women's Health at Cedars-SinaiMedical Center are launching a clinical trial to assess whether eating certain plant compounds can have positive effects on the lining of the uterus. These plant compounds, called "isoflavones," are found in particularly high amounts in clover and soybeans. Isoflavones are also known as "phytoestrogens" because they have been found to have a variety of mild hormonal actions within the human body.

Georgina Hale, M.D., a visiting internist from Australia doing post-doctoral clinical research at Cedars-Sinai, said that this is the first study of its kind specifically directed at the effects of isoflavones on the human endometrium.

Because the normal endometrium is constantly changing and is highly responsive to hormonal fluctuations, it provides an excellent environment in which to detect the impact of isoflavones, said Dr. Hale. During the normal menstrual cycle, the endometrium grows thicker as its cells multiply. These cells are then shed during menstruation, after which the process begins again.

Estrogen, one of the hormones produced by the body, is primarily responsible for directing endometrial cells to multiply or proliferate. While proliferation is necessary during the "build-up" phase of the endometrium's cycle, estrogen's proliferative effects need to be constrained by other hormones, such as progesterone. If estrogen stimulation continues unchecked, endometrial hyperplasia can result. This condition is a known risk factor for the later development of endometrial cancer.

There is evidence that phytoestrogens in the diet may help counteract the proliferative effects of estrogen. "In Asia, where there is a high dietary phytoestrogen intake, there is also a low incidence of endometrial cancer," said Dr. Hale. "Asian women have an endometrial cancer rate as low as one in 100,000 but women in the United States have rates as high as 20 in 100,000. Furthermore, when Asian women adopt a Western diet, their endometrial cancer rates increase."

Claude Hughes, M.D., Ph.D., a specialist in obstetrics and gynecology, and director of the Center for Women's Health, has been involved in earlier studies on the impact of phytoestrogens on the endometrial cells of monkeys and rats. In those two studies, soy-based phytoestrogens appeared to counteract estrogen's proliferative effects, although another study conducted elsewhere failed to support this finding in rats. "The benefits of phytoestrogens look promising in monkeys, mammals that are similar in many ways to humans, but the studies in rodents were inconclusive. It seemed to us that the next step in determining the value of phytoestrogens in women would be to analyze actual human tissue."

Women who volunteer to participate in the study will be given a thorough gynecological examination at the beginning of the study and another at the conclusion. This will provide "before and after" observations of endometrial proliferation. Ultrasound studies will be used to view the uterine artery and to gauge the thickness of the endometrium. Even more definitive information will come from biopsies of endometrial tissues. From these, the researchers will be able to look for microscopic changes and measure levels of Ki67 antigen, a substance that tends to increase with proliferative activity.

During their three to four months of participation, women in the study will be asked to follow a soybean product-restricted diet and take a single tablet each day. This tablet will contain either clover-based phytoestrogens or placebo. Only the study's sponsor, Novogen, an Australia-based manufacturer of dietary supplements, will have the code identifying which patients receive which pills.

Women who volunteer for the study will receive a health screen, endometrial biopsy and ultrasound examinations at no charge, as well as a monetary award for completion of the study. Participants will also receive health maintenance information from physicians and dietitians. For example, certain lifestyle factors, such as diet and exercise for weight management, have been found to reduce estrogen levels and the associated risk of endometrial cancer.

The study is open to women between 45 and 50 years of age who are in good health, still having menstrual cycles, and not currently taking hormone replacement therapy or the oral contraceptive. Those interested may contact Dr. Hale at the Cedars Sinai Center for Women's Health at 310-855-3291 or 310-855-7432 for details on additional requirements and benefits of participation.

# # #

For media information and to arrange an interview, please call 1-800-396-1002 or e-mail sandy@vancommunications.com. (Thanks for not publishing this contact information in stories.) A full-text version of this news release, plus other news information from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, is available.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. "Study At Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Investigates Possible Protective Effects Of Plant Compounds On The Uterus." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 August 1999. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/08/990823210824.htm>.
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. (1999, August 24). Study At Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Investigates Possible Protective Effects Of Plant Compounds On The Uterus. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/08/990823210824.htm
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. "Study At Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Investigates Possible Protective Effects Of Plant Compounds On The Uterus." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/08/990823210824.htm (accessed August 29, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, August 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

3 Things To Know About The Ebola Outbreak's Progression

3 Things To Know About The Ebola Outbreak's Progression

Newsy (Aug. 29, 2014) Here are three things you need to know about the deadly Ebola outbreak's progression this week. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) State health officials say testing has confirmed the presence of a killer amoeba in a water system serving three St. John the Baptist Parish towns. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Who Could Be Burnt by WHO's E-Cigs Move?

Who Could Be Burnt by WHO's E-Cigs Move?

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 28, 2014) The World Health Organisation has called for the regulation of electronic cigarettes as both tobacco and medical products. Ciara Lee looks at the impact of the move on the tobacco industry. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Director On Ebola Outbreak: 'It's Worse Than I Feared'

CDC Director On Ebola Outbreak: 'It's Worse Than I Feared'

Newsy (Aug. 28, 2014) CDC director Tom Frieden says the Ebola outbreak is even worse than he feared. But he also said there's still hope to contain it. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins