Can the miracle cure for cancer be found in the noni plant?
Researchers at the University of Hawaii Cancer Research Center were awarded $340,000 by the National Institutes of Health in 2001 to find out.
Part of the study looked at what chemicals in noni got into the blood and could be responsible for anti-cancer activity. The two-year study included 29 cancer patients who had undergone standard treatments.
In the lab, noni showed antioxidant, tumor-fighting properties. Mice with tumors, injected with with a noni treatment, survived twice as love as those untreated. More studies are needed to better understand the fruit's benefits to humans.
Found throughout the Hawaiian Islands and other tropical areas, noni (also known as Indian mulberry or morinda citrifolia) has been used for hundreds of years as a healing medicine by Native Hawaiians.
During World War II, soldiers stationed in the South Pacific ate noni for added strength.
Noni is high in potassium. Scientists have already discovered that the plant kills the bacterium that causes tuberculosis, which could lead to new drugs to fight the disease.
Japan investigators have also found that a noni root compound inhibited the chemical process (known as the ras function) that converts some normal cells into cancerous cells and caused the bad cells to return to their normal shape and structure.
"Hope," explained British motivational writer Samuel Smiles, "is the companion of power, and the mother of success; for who hopes strongly, has within him the gift of miracles."
Miracles do happen.