β-Cryptoxanthin And Hesperidin Found To Be Potential Cancer Chemopreventive Compounds

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Japanese researchers discovered that β-Cryptoxanthin and hesperidin possess inhibitory effects on carcinogenesis in several rodent and mouse tissues.

For their experiment they chemically induced cancer in the rat colon, rat tongue, and mouse lung.  They then prepared a formula of pulp and citrus juices from the satsuma mandarin (Citrus unshiu Mar.).  Satsuma mandarin (Citrus unshiu Mar.) juice and pulp contains high amounts of  β-cryptoxanthin and hesperidin. 

Their formula inhibited tumorigenesis in all three cancers.  1

Beta-cryptoxanthin belongs to the class of carotenoids, more specifically the xanthophylls. In the human body, beta-cryptoxanthin is converted to vitamin A (retinol) and is therefore considered as a pro-vitamin A.

Hesperidin is a flavan-on glycoside found in citrus fruits. Its aglycone form is called hesperetin.  Hesperidin inhibits chemically induced carcinogenesis in several organs.  2

The study from the Japanese researchers demonstrate that oral administration of β-Cryptoxanthin and hesperidin inhibits the development of malignant epithelial neoplasms in:

  • colon
  • tongue
  • lung

tumors of rodents.  3 

The conclusion made by the Japanese researchers was as follows:

In conclusion, our findings may indicate that CHRP and MJs that are able to inhibit chemically induced carcinogenesis through modulation of proliferation, detoxifying enzymes, and mRNA expression of several cytokines and inflammatory enzymes are potential cancer chemopreventive agents against tongue, colon, and lung cancer development.  4

Foods that contain β-Cryptoxanthin and Hesperidin

  • β-Cryptoxanthin
  • Hesperidin

The phytochemical beta-cryptoxanthin can be found in many vegetables and fruits:

  • papaya
  • mango
  • peaches
  • oranges
  • tangerines
  • bell peppers
  • corn
  • watermelon

It is also found in some yellow coloured animal products such as:

  • egg yolk
  • butter

Hesperidin is found mainly in citrus fruits: