Scientists at Bedford Hospital have made a major breakthrough in the fight against prostate cancer.
A team from the hospital travelled to Chicago this week to present their findings after discovering that a unique food supplement, made from ingredients including green tea and broccoli, has a significant effect on men suffering from the disease.
Professor Robert Thomas, consultant oncologist at Bedford Hospital led the six-month trial in conjunction with Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge and Cranfield University.
Speaking from Chicago, where he presented the findings at the ASCO scientific conference, he told the T&C: “It is mind blowing, I never realised that it would have such an impact.”
He added: “It is very likely that this will lead to a cure but the next stage is to try to work with a pharmaceutical company to do a cancer prevention study - that is the golden egg that we would go for.
“We are really pleased at Bedford Hospital, we have really worked together. Cranfield are our partners and they have provided the statistics. Our patients were fantastic and there was a really rapid recruitment, it’s a reflection of the hospital.”
The food supplement, which is called Pomi-T and contains pomegranate, green tea, turmeric and broccoli, was trialed for six months.
The 203 patients tested were a group of men who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer, but were not yet at a stage where treatment such as radiotherapy was required.
At the end of the trial there was a 63 per cent difference in the rise in the level of protein produced by the prostate gland (PSA) which is an indicator of cancer.
Keith Bennett, a retired father of two from Bromham, has been taking the supplement, which costs around £10 for a month’s supply, after being diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2007.
He said: “It’s shown a favourable result. My PSA, which is the test that they take to monitor it, has come down so that’s a very good sign.”
He added: “If I can keep it at that level I will never get to the level where I have to have anything done. I want to let everyone know. I have one or two friends that have had the same diagnosis and I’ve told them about it.”