METHODS: 4T1 cancer cells were treated with kefir water in vitro to assess its antimigration and anti-invasion effects. BALB/c mice were injected with 4T1 cancer cells and treated orally with kefir water for 28 days.
RESULTS: Kefir water was cytotoxic toward 4T1 cells at IC50 (half-maximal inhibitory concentration) of 12.5 and 8.33 mg/mL for 48 and 72 hours, respectively. A significant reduction in tumor size and weight (0.9132 ± 0.219 g) and a substantial increase in helper T cells (5-fold) and cytotoxic T cells (7-fold) were observed in the kefir water-treated group. Proinflammatory and proangiogenic markers were significantly reduced in the kefir water-treated group.
CONCLUSIONS: Kefir water inhibited tumor proliferation in vitro and in vivo mainly through cancer cell apoptosis, immunomodulation by stimulating T helper cells and cytotoxic T cells, and anti-inflammatory, antimetastatic, and antiangiogenesis effects. This study brought out the potential of the probiotic beverage kefir water in cancer treatment.
METHODS: This is a cross-sectional study involved interviewing newly diagnosed breast cancer patients in the University Malaya Medical Centre (UMMC) using a structured questionnaire. Eligible respondents were interviewedduring a routine clinical visit.
RESULTS: A total of 400 patients were interviewed, of whom 139 (34.8%) were CAM users. Dietary supplementation (n = 107, 77.0%) was the most frequently used type of CAM, followed by spiritual healing (n = 40, 28.8%) and traditional Chinese medicine (n = 32, 23.0%). Malay ethnic group (n = 61, 43.9%) was the largest group of CAM users, followed by Chinese (n = 57, 41.0%) and Indian (n = 20, 14.4%). Majority of these CAM users (n = 87, 73.1%) did not disclose the use of CAM to their doctors. Most of them used remedies based on the recommendation of family and friends. Malay ethnicity and patients with 3 or more comorbidities were more likely to use CAM.
CONCLUSION: There is substantial use of CAM among breast cancer patients in UMMC prior to seeking hospital treatment, and the most popular CAM modality is dietary supplements. Since, the majority of CAM users do not disclose the use of CAM to their physicians, therefore health care providers should ensure that those patients who are likely to use CAM are appropriately counseled and advised.