Treat Skin Cancer With Hibiscus Extract

Did you know…this plant extract can treat the deadliest kind of skin cancer?

Melanoma, the least common form of skin cancer, is also the most deadly.
That’s why it’s so exciting to know that a new study published in Molecular Cancer Therapeutics in April of 2013 >pinpointed a natural substance—gossypin—capable of treating melanoma. Even better, according to Natural News Health Science editor Sherry Baker, the scientists say they know why it works.

Gossypin, a flavon, was first extracted from the hibiscus plant (H. vitfolius), but can also be isolated from cotton and a variety of other fruits and vegetables. “Our research indicates that gossypin may have great therapeutic potential,” said lead researcher Hareesh Nair, Ph.D., of Texas Biomed.

Using gossypin extracted from hibiscus plants, Nair and his team was able to inhibit the growth of human melanoma cells.

A Rising Risk

The American Cancer Society reports that nearly 76,000 people are diagnosed with melanoma annually. An estimated 9,000 people each year will die from this aggressive cancer in the United States alone.

Incidences of melanoma have risen over the past 3 decades. Historically, the cancer developed almost exclusively in adults, but rates among children are now escalating. hibiscus health benefits

That’s why any promising treatment for this brutal disease represents great hope.

Past studies have established gossypin’s ability to suppress inflammation and the growth of cancer cells. However, Nair and his colleagues were the first to identify “the underlying molecular activity.”

The research team found gossypin works by stunting the activity of two common, carcinogenic gene mutations: BRAFV600E kinase and CDK4. In 70% of melanoma cases, those two gene mutations appear. Nair termed the mutations “ideal targets for melanoma treatment.”

He added that discovering gossypin’s remarkable “dual inhibitory activity…opened a new avenue for the generation of a novel class of compounds for the treatment of melanoma.”

Hibiscus Health Benefits Flower Power

As mentioned, gossypin is most often isolated from the Hibiscus plant. A burst of recent studies, including the one conducted by Nair and his team, has sparked interest in the hibiscus plant. Experts estimate that 15% to 30% of the plant is composed of acids, such as…

    • Citric acid
    • Malic acid
    • Tartaric acid
    • Allo-hydroxycitric acid lactone.

The last, allo-hydroxycitric acid lactone, is unique to hibiscus. Aside from an abundance of acids, hibiscus health benefits also contains important alkaloids…anthocyanins…and quercetin.

Current research highlights the anti-inflammatory and pain-reducing properties of hibiscus health benefits, noting its potential for treating not only cancer, but also diabetes, liver malfunctions, and high cholesterol and blood pressure.

Around the globe, traditional healers have used hibiscus health benefits for centuries to alleviate an assortment of maladies. For instance, Egyptian and Sudanese practitioners use hibiscus to boost heart health. In North Africa, hibiscus is applied topically to ensure healthy skin.

Meanwhile, Europeans have taken hibiscus extract to treat issues such as…

  • Upper respiratory ailments
  • Occasional constipation
  • Poor circulation
  • Sleeplessness (in conjunction with lemon balm and St. John’s Wort)

Tori Hudson, ND, says the safety profile of hibiscus “excellent.” There are no documented adverse reactions, however Hudson warns: “It is difficult to clarify dosing recommendations when different products are used in different studies.”

Be sure to investigate proper dosage of any hibiscus extract before trying it.