Frankincense ‘fights cancer’
It is known to most people as one of the three gifts borne by the Wise Men when they visited the newborn Jesus.
But now frankincense – an aromatic resin – is being hailed as a medical marvel. For scientists have discovered that it could be used to treat ovarian cancer.
In tests, Leicester University researchers found that a chemical in frankincense killed cells from hard-to-treat tumours.
Ovarian cancer is symptomless in the earliest stages and usually not diagnosed until it is too late, making it the deadliest gynaecological cancer.
There are more than 7,000 cases a year in Britain and 4,300 of these women will die from the disease – around 12 a day.
Frankincense, the resin of the Boswellia sacra – a small tree found in Oman, Yemen and Somalia – is known for its anti-inflammatory properties and has long been used in folk medicine, along with resin from other types of Boswellia.
It is being studied as a treatment for several cancers.
The Leicester University researchers said: ‘Frankincense is taken by many people with no known side-effects.
‘This finding has enormous potential to be taken to clinical trial in the future and developed into an additional treatment for ovarian cancer.’
© Daily Mail, London