Research Suggests Black Cohosh (RemiFemin®) Can Be Used Safely
By Breast Cancer Patients.
PA, 3 October 2002
Tube Research Indicates Standardized Herbal Supplement Has No Estrogenic
Effects on the Breast
study published in the current issue of Breast Cancer Research
and Treatment suggests that RemiFemin® Menopause can be
used safely to relieve menopausal symptoms in women with a history
of breast cancer who cannot take estrogen. The study adds to the
growing body of evidence showing that RemiFemin relieves symptoms
without exerting an estrogenic effect. This is welcome news for
the many women who cannot or who choose not to take hormone replacement
is promising news for all women, especially those with a history
of breast cancer, who are looking for estrogen-free alternatives
to treat menopausal symptoms," said Susan Love, MD, internationally
recognized authority on women's health, Adjunct Professor of Surgery
at UCLA, and the author of several books, including, the best selling
Dr. Susan Love's Hormone Book and Dr. Susan Love's Breast
Design and Methods
research, conducted by Johannes Freudenstein, PhD, and colleagues,
was designed to evaluate the safety of RemiFemin Menopause, a standardized
black cohosh supplement, as an alternative for estrogen-sensitive
patients for whom HRT is contraindicated. The study examined and
compared the effects of black cohosh extract, estrogen, tamoxifen
(an anti-estrogen) and a placebo control on estrogen-sensitive breast
evaluate the safety and estrogenic activity of RemiFemin, Dr. Freudenstein
and colleagues performed experiments using cultured estrogen receptor-positive
MCF-7 cells. The experiments tested for potential estrogen-like
activity of RemiFemin by examining the rate of growth of MCF-7 cells
exposed to black cohosh extract as compared to both negative (placebo)
and positive (estrogen) controls, as well as tamoxifen.
black cohosh was introduced to the cell model it, in contrast to
estrogen, did not stimulate growth. In fact, dilutions comparable
to the commercially available dose of black cohosh extract (RemiFemin)
resulted in significant inhibition of MCF-7 cell growth. Furthermore,
black cohosh was found to enhance the inhibitory effect of tamoxifen,
a commonly prescribed drug for treatment of breast cancer, which,
as expected, significantly reduced cell proliferation.
estrogen, which stimulated cancerous cell growth in the human-breast
cell system studied, RemiFemin did not have such a proliferative
effect, confirming its safety in patients with a history of breast
cancer. These data provide important evidence that black cohosh
works differently than estrogens and phytoestrogens to relieve the
symptoms of menopause," noted Steven Weisman, PhD, a pharmacologist
and herbal expert.
research was funded by Schaper & Brummer, a leading herbal company
based in Salzgitter, Germany.
replacement therapy (HRT) is a commonly prescribed treatment for
relief of menopausal symptoms, which affects a third of American
women -- more than 35 million -- each year. However, recent reports
from the Women's Health Initiative question its ability to improve
women's overall health on a long-term basis and raise concerns about
long-term safety. While HRT still remains a valuable option for
women who want short-term relief of menopausal symptoms, many women
cannot or choose not to take HRT. In addition, experts recommend
that women with estrogen-sensitive cancers seek alternative methods
for alleviating menopausal symptoms.
treatments are gaining popularity for relieving symptoms of menopause.
However, data on the effectiveness of phytoestrogens, including
soy and red clover, are uncertain. In addition, phytoestrogens,
based on their mechanisms of action, may have effects that are similar
to estrogen in women at increased risk of female cancers.
estrogens and phytoestrogens, RemiFemin Menopause has been shown
to relieve menopause symptoms without estrogen-like activity --
this data supports the non-estrogenic effects of Remifemin in the
breast, which was also demonstrated in an in-vivo study published
in the June issue of Cancer Research.
manufacturer of RemiFemin, via PR Newswire.