While I was doing research for my bipterostilbene post (see my November 10th post), I came across an earlier ASH report on pterostilbene, = without the prefix “bi,” which has a lot of healthful effects, including lowering your cholesterol and triglycerides.
The purpose of that particular study, presented at ASH in December 2009, was to see how effective it would be against multiple myeloma cells: http://goo.gl/w5zy0
As we can see from the abstract, pterostilbene inhibits HDAC, = histone deacetylase, which is a sort of large enzyme family that, because of its incrrrrrredibly bad behaviour, has become a target in myeloma research. If you check my February 9 2011 post titled “Future myeloma treatments,” e.g., you will find HDAC inhibitors listed at number 5. Ever heard of Vorinostat? Yep, that’s an HDAC inhibitor. As is curcumin, by the way…almost goes without sayin’! 😉
Back to our study. Pterostilbene by itself inhibited the growth of two myeloma cell lines and of fresh bone marrow tumor cells from MM patients by 50%. Fifty percent…wow. And it also KILLED myeloma cells in a concentration-dependent fashion. Sounds good to me!
Another finding: when pterostilbene was combined with melphalan and bortezomib, the results were even better than those achieved by the two drugs on their own. The obvious conclusion is that These studies establish pterostilbene as a novel HDACi with potent anti-MM activity alone and also show its ability to enhance the anti-MM effects of chemotherapeutic agents and bortezomib. “Potent,” huh???
This compound can be found in the skin of a variety of berries (blueberries!) and fruit. And in rhubarb, too, of course, as we’ve seen (see my recent bipterostilbene post). It’s a close relative of resveratrol but, from what I read, it may be even more powerful.
Here’s a study on pterostilbene and breast cancer: http://goo.gl/531yL In it we learn that this powerful antioxidant also has fungicidal and anti-diabetic activity AND lowers blood glucose. Indeed, it was found to be as strong as a drug called ciprofibrate, which is used to lower bad cholesterol and triglycerides. But pterostilbene doesn’t have any of the negative side effects of the drug (now, where have I heard thaaaat before?).
Another blog reader already takes pterostilbene as a supplement. I have too many things to try (things that have upcoming expiration dates, argh!) right now, so I won’t be testing this thing any time soon, but it’s certainly going on my list.
In the meantime, let’s help ourselves to an extra portion of that great-looking blueberry and rhubarb pie over there (hah, I wish!)! Though I suspect we’d probably have to eat not just one but a whole bunch of pies to get enough pterostilbene to do us any good, just as we’d have to gulp down a few truckloads of the spice turmeric to get enough of its active ingredient, curcumin, to make a difference.
Not really feasible, eh…Still, even a little bit is better than nothing… 🙂