Anethole: might it be an effective prostate cancer drug?

We are well aware that many patients are interested in the potential of “natural products” as effective and safe forms of treatment for cancer.

While there are, as yet, no known data suggesting that anethole (an organic compound found naturally in products like anise, star anise, and fennel) is a safe and effective form of treatment for prostate cancer, there is a new paper by Elkady indicating that it certainly seems to have biochemical activity against prostate cancer cells in the laboratory.

Of course biochemical activity in a Petri dish and clinical activity in a man with prostate cancer are two very different things. We are not suggesting that drinking large quantities of absinthe or adding large amounts of star anise to your diet are necessarily going to have clinical benefit as a form of treatment for prostate cancer.

2 Responses

  1. Do you know how many thousands of compounds have “biochemical activity against prostate cancer in the laboratory?” People with cancer are desperate for quick fixes and are apt to jump on anything they see mentioned in sites like this, irrespective of any disclaimers you may add. They will find sources for large amounts as supplements and possible do harm to themselves. Not all the news is fit to print. I suggest you remove this posting.

  2. Ahhh Alan … but not all are as delicious (for some!) as anethole. I’ve been in Quebec all week sipping Ricard! Removing this post will circumvent a healthy debate on why some hate the taste of anise and others love it … :<))

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