A compound found in broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables has been found to slow the growth of breast cancer cells, especially at early stages.

While sulforaphane has long shown evidence

of value in cancer prevention, researchers at Oregon State University (OSU) and the Oregon Health & Science University suggested in a new study that it may play a role in slowing cancer growth as well.

The findings were the result of the first clinical studies to look at the effect of sulforaphane on breast tissues of women diagnosed with breast cancer.

Emily Ho, a professor at the OSU College of Public Health and Human Sciences, said "our original goal was to determine if sulforaphane supplements would be well tolerated and might alter some of the epigenetic mechanisms involved in cancer."

In a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial, 54 women with abnormal mammograms were given either a placebo or supplements that provided sulforaphane. The amount of sulforaphane they received would equate to about one cup of broccoli sprouts per day, if eaten as a food.

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