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Sandalwood can combat prostate cancer

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Sandalwood oil could combat prostate cancer and stop it spreading.

The oil is usually used as a perfume for soaps and candles, but it also has cancer-fighting properties, especially against prostate cancer, a new study has discovered.

It can help prevent the cancer and slow its spread once it has been diagnosed, and it may be effective even in advanced cases.

Researchers at Florida Atlantic University Schmidt College of Medicine have identified santalol—made up of alpha and beta-santalol—as the key cancer-fighting ingredient in sandalwood.  Alpha-santalol combats prostate tumours by blocking cells from developing and triggering apoptosis, or cell death, which rids the body of abnormal cells such as cancerous ones.

Unlike conventional treatments, sandalwood doesn’t have any side effects or harm healthy cells that surround the tumour.

The researchers have already demonstrated the effects of alpha-santalol on human prostate cancer cells in test-tubes, but they’ve now seen the same effects on laboratory mice.  The mice were genetically engineered to emulate human prostate cancer, and the cancer developed in just 11 percent of the alpha-santalol group compared to more than 50 percent of those who had not been given the oil.

References
Phytomedicine Plus, 2024; 4: 100523; doi: 10.1016/j.phyplu.2024.100523
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