Breast Cancer and Paw Paw

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Extracts of paw paw (Asimina triloba, Annonaceae family) have strong anti-cancer activity. The paw paw is a small tree with edible fruit native to eastern North America. The annonaceous acetogenins are derivatives of long-chain (C32 or C34) fatty acids and act as anti-tumour agents against breast, lung and colon cancer. Biologically, they exhibit their potent bioactivities through depletion of ATP levels via inhibiting complex I of mitochondria and inhibiting the NADH oxidase of plasma membranes of tumor cells. Thus, they thwart ATP-driven resistance mechanisms. They also have powerful pesticidal, antimalarial, anthelmintic, antiviral, and antimicrobial effects. An encapsulated extract made from the twigs of Paw Paw has been effectively used by certain cancer patients as a botanical supplement.