Research commissioned by the National Mango Board (US) into the nutritional value of mangoes, has revealed that a compound they contain can fight cancerous cells.
Doctors Susanne and Steve Talcott conducted the research at Texas AgriLife Research in 2010 using extracts of the compound polyphenol, which is found in mango fruit.
The testing showed an impact on lung, leukemia and prostate cancers, while it was shown to be most effective against common breast and colon cancers.
Dr Susanne Talcott, of Texas AgriLife Research, said: “What we found is that not all cell lines are sensitive to the same extent to an anticancer agent.
“But the breast and colon cancer lines underwent apotosis, or programmed cell death”.
The food scientists added that use of the compound in vitro did not appear to have a negative impact on healthy cells, and the Talcotts were also hoping to test its clinical efficiency.
The pair later researched the effect of polyphenols from mangoes on breast cancer at Texas A&M University, where they tested the anti-inflammatory and cell-toxicity properties of the compounds.
Speaking after the most recent 2014 study, Dr Susanne Talcott said: “So far, the indications are positive, but a lot of work will have to be done to determine the actual concentration of mango metabolites in target tissues”.
The research was performed using polyphenol extracted from mangoes provided by the National Mango Board and administered in vitro on mice implanted with cancerous human cells.