MELATONIN IN CANCER
Melatonin, known as N acetyl-5-methoxytryptamine is a multitasking hormone produced by the pineal gland and other organs of the body such as bone marrow, retina, and skin. The secretion of melatonin is regulated by the master biological clock of the hypothalamus, in the human brain.
It is easily available at affordable rates. Melatonin is usually prescribed as an over-the-counter diet supplement, however, there are various natural supplements present in the market as well.
It plays a vital role in cancer treatment through different applications and may have therapeutic significance.
The underlying reasons for melatonin being an active cancer-fighting agent are its antioxidant property, modulation by melatonin receptors, stimulation of apoptosis, regulation of tumor metabolism, inhibition of metastasis, and induction of epigenetic alteration.
Research shows that melatonin induces a significant decrease in tumor size and promotes immunity against carcinogenic compounds. It can also be an excellent candidate for the prevention and treatment of several types of cancer, such as gastric cancer, prostate cancer, breast cancer, and colorectal cancer.
Studies show that the melatonin hormone participates in the activation of lymphocytes and monocytes/macrophages, preventing tumor development, and fighting against potential carcinogens.
By controlling circadian rhythms of sleep and wakefulness, melatonin inhibits the growth of cancer cells, including breast cancer and melanoma, when directly applied to the cells.
The biomodification of cancer chemotherapy and radiotherapy by the administration of melatonin confirms decreased toxicity and increased efficacy of cancer treatment on patients with poor clinical status and solid metastatic tumors.
Controlled trials that examined the relationship between melatonin levels and neoplastic activity concluded that Melatonin, through its antiproliferative, antioxidative, and immunostimulatory actions, should be considered a naturally oncostatic agent.
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