Tucson researchers recruiting women for cancer-prevention study - Tucson News Now

Tucson researchers recruiting women for cancer-prevention study

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

Mom was right.

Broccoli is good for you, and now University of Arizona researchers are going to see if it can help keep breast cancer from coming back, and even prevent it in the first place.

It's actually a compound in broccoli called DIM. 

That's short for diindolylmethane.

University of Arizona researchers are recruiting women for this study who are taking the drug Tamoxifen.

Some are women who taking it to prevent breast cancer.

Others are taking the drug to prevent a recurrence of the disease.

Researchers noticed that breast cancer survivors who took Tamoxifen, and who ate a lot of what are called cruciferous vegetables, such as cauliflower, brussel sprouts and broccoli, had a reduced rate of recurrence of breast cancer.

So now there's a study to answer an important question.

UA Public Health Professor and cancer researcher Dr. Cynthia Thomson is heading the study, and as she puts it, "If you combine this natural compound that's found in cruciferous vegetables, in broccoli for example, with Tamoxifen -- a drug well-known for the treatment of breast cancer, will we have an added benefit from the Tamoxifen?"

The $3 million grant from the National Cancer Institute was awarded to the Arizona Cancer Center. 

In a news release, the Arizona Cancer Center says,

"Alison Stopeck, MD, a co-investigator in the study and the director of the Clinical Breast Cancer Program at the UA Cancer Center, sees this research as a unique opportunity to determine the potential of non-invasive imaging to be a reliable biomarker for breast cancer risk. Women in the study will complete periodic magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) procedures for measuring breast characteristics.

Study participants will be asked to take the supplement or placebo for 18 months and complete periodic clinical evaluation visits. The supplement is a patented, absorption enhancing formulation of diindolylmethane known as BioResponse DIM® (also known under the tradenames Indolplex® or BR-Dim®) supplied by BioResponse, LLC, of  Boulder, Colo."

A warning from Thomson about taking DIME on your own.

Thomson says some women are taking the supplement form of DIME without supervision, and she's concerned that, for now, no one really knows exactly how it interacts with Tamoxifen.

So, for now, she encourages eating broccoli instead.

The scientists need 100 more women for this study.

If you would like to find out more about participating in the study, call Julie West at the Arizona Cancer Center at 321-7748.

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