There are no pharmaceutical drugs that can affect galectin-3. So it is very welcome to hear that modified citrus pectin could possibly halt its activity and repair the damage caused by the protein.
Galectin-3 is naturally produced by the body. In normal amounts, it encourages the growth and repair of healthy tissues. It also promotes inflammation and immune response against pathogens. However, high levels of this protein are also a known warning sign of a degenerative disease. Excess amounts are also linked with cancer, heart failure, and kidney problems.
Galectin-3 helps cancer cells cling to the walls of blood vessels. It protects the tumor cells from undergoing self-destruction. It spurs the creation of fibroblasts that scar the muscles of the heart, as well as type 1 collagen that causes dysfunction in those muscles.
If there is too much galectin-3, it induces excessive amounts of inflammation that disrupt the normal functions of tissue and organs. Older people are especially vulnerable to this, since galectin-3 levels increase with age. (Related: A flavonoid found in citrus fruits helps keep the heart strong in cancer patients.)
Fortunately, the ill effects of galectin-3 can be halted by modified citrus pectin (MCP). Derived from the natural pectin found in citrus fruits, MCP contains special sugar molecules called galactosides.
MCP uses galactosides to bind with the galectin-3 protein. Once bound, it will shut down the protein, thereby preventing the latter from activating its harmful effects.
An animal model demonstrated that the effects of MCP was not limited to stopping galectin-3. It also managed inflammatory reactions, reversed fibrosis, and helped blood vessel walls get thinner again. In effect, the carbohydrate successfully reversed the damage that would have caused heart failure.
It performed these health benefits for the kidneys as well. It reduced the tissue swelling attributed to kidney disease, helped decrease fibrosis, and lowered the number of inflammatory cells. Last but not least, MCP neutralized the galectin-3 in those organs, preventing further damage.
The immune system employs specialized cancer-fighting units called natural killer cells. It sends out these cells to find, identify, and kill cancers as the latter begin to emerge in the body.
It turned out that modified citrus pectin was capable of activating these anti-cancer cells. In an experiment conducted by Dharma Biomedical LLC (Dharma Biomedical) researchers, the complex carbohydrate spurred the natural killer cells to target leukemic cancer cells and cause apoptosis.
The cancer-fighting property of MCP was corroborated by other studies. One animal study proved that the carbohydrate can stop skin cancer cells from adhering to healthy tissue and blood vessels.
This blocking action prevented the skin cancer from migrating to the lungs, which would have caused further complications. MCP accomplished this same effect for colon cancer, which it stopped from infecting the liver.
Even more research – such as a 2005 study by the Harvard Medical School – have found that MCP itself can induce the apoptotic self-destruct factor in cancer cells. It can also make the cells more vulnerable to other anti-cancer treatments.
Modified citrus pectin can be extracted from the peel and pulp of citrus fruit. What was once considered a waste product could provide a natural anti-cancer remedy at a cheap price.
CancerSolutions.news can keep you informed about MCP and other natural ways of protecting yourself against cancer.