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Findings Hint at Green Tea Use in Oral Precancerous Lesions

Higher doses of green tea extract linked to better clinical response with oral premalignant lesions

THURSDAY, Nov. 5 (HealthDay News) -- Green tea extract (GTE) may be useful in treating oral premalignant lesions, according to research published in the November issue of Cancer Prevention Research.

Anne S. Tsao, M.D., of the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, and colleagues analyzed data from 39 patients with high-risk oral premalignant lesions. Subjects were randomized to receive placebo or one of three doses of GTE -- 500, 750, or 1,000 mg/m2 -- three times daily for 12 weeks. The primary end point was clinical and histologic response of the lesions.

The researchers found that subjects in the combined GTE groups showed a trend toward a higher clinical response rate compared to placebo (50 versus 18.2 percent), though this was insignificant. However, the higher-dose groups had significantly higher clinical response rates compared to the 500-mg/m2 group and the placebo group (58.8 versus 36.4 and 18.2 percent, respectively). The treatment and placebo groups showed no difference in oral cancer-free survival.

"In conclusion, higher doses of GTE for 12 weeks in our trial led to a higher clinical response rate but did not generate an improvement in oral cancer free survival. It remains unclear whether a longer duration of GTE would have led to a greater preventive benefit, but it seems that GTE administered at 750 to 1,000 mg/m2 TID is feasible over a longer duration of time," the authors conclude.

Ito En Ltd. funded the trial and employs a co-author.

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