SUNDAY, May 20, 2007 (HealthDay News) -- Green tea may help protect against bladder inflammation, a new study says.
"We discovered that catechins found in green tea protected both normal and cancerous bladder cells from inflammation when we exposed the cells to hydrogen peroxide," Dr. Michael B. Chancellor, professor of urology and gynecology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, said in a prepared statement.
"Although further studies are needed, the results indicate herbal supplements from green tea could be a treatment option for various bladder conditions that are caused by injury or inflammation," he said.
In their laboratory study, Chancellor and his colleagues exposed normal and cancerous bladder cells to two major catechin components of green tea -- epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) and epicatechin gallate (ECG) -- and then exposed the cells to hydrogen peroxide.
Hydrogen peroxide normally damages or kills cells, but EGCG and ECG offered significant protection to the cells. The concentrations of the two kinds of catechins were at levels that can be obtained through normal dietary intake, the researchers said.
The study was to presented Sunday at the annual meeting of the American Urological Association, in Anaheim, Calif.
The U.S. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine has more about green tea.