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Study shows red onions are effective at killing cancer cells

Zoom in font  Zoom out font Published: 2017-06-12  Views: 0
Core Tip: A new study by U of G researchers shows that Ontario-grown onions may help kill cancer cells, but not all onions are created equal.
A new study by U of G researchers shows that Ontario-grown onions may help kill cancer cells, but not all onions are created equal. Engineering professor Suresh Neethirajan and PhD student Abdulmonem Murayyan tested five onion types grown in Ontario and discovered the Ruby Ring onion variety came out on top.

Onions as a superfood are still not well known. But they contain one of the highest concentrations of quercetin, a type of flavonoid, and Ontario onions boasts particularly high levels of the compound compared to some parts of the world.

Published recently in Food Research International, the study involved placing colon cancer cells in direct contact with quercetin extracted from the five different onion varieties.

"We found onions are excellent at killing cancer cells," said Murayyan, study's lead author. "Onions activate pathways that encourage cancer cells to undergo cell death. They promote an unfavourable environment for cancer cells and they disrupt communication between cancer cells, which inhibits growth."
 
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