Prostate-Specific Natural Health Products (Dietary Supplements) Radiosensitize Normal Prostate Cells

Yasmin Hasan, Diane Schoenherr, Alvaro A. Martinez, George D. Wilson, Brian Marples

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Purpose: Prostate-specific health products (dietary supplements) are taken by cancer patients to alleviate the symptoms linked with poor prostate health. However, the effect of these agents on evidence-based radiotherapy practice is poorly understood. The present study aimed to determine whether dietary supplements radiosensitized normal prostate or prostate cancer cell lines. Methods and Materials: Three well-known prostate-specific dietary supplements were purchased from commercial sources available to patients (Trinovin, Provelex, and Prostate Rx). The cells used in the study included normal prostate lines (RWPE-1 and PWR-1E), prostate tumor lines (PC3, DU145, and LNCaP), and a normal nonprostate line (HaCaT). Supplement toxicity was assessed using cell proliferation assays [3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyl tetrazolium bromide] and cellular radiosensitivity using conventional clonogenic assays (0.5-4Gy). Cell cycle kinetics were assessed using the bromodeoxyuridine/propidium iodide pulse-labeling technique, apoptosis by scoring caspase-3 activation, and DNA repair by assessing γH2AX. Results: The cell growth and radiosensitivity of the malignant PC3, DU145, and LNcaP cells were not affected by any of the dietary prostate supplements (Provelex [2μg/mL], Trinovin [10μg/mL], and Prostate Rx [50 μg/mL]). However, both Trinovin (10μg/mL) and Prostate Rx (6μg/mL) inhibited the growth rate of the normal prostate cell lines. Prostate Rx increased cellular radiosensitivity of RWPE-1 cells through the inhibition of DNA repair. Conclusion: The use of prostate-specific dietary supplements should be discouraged during radiotherapy owing to the preferential radiosensitization of normal prostate cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)896-904
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Dietary supplements
  • Ionizing radiation
  • Prostate
  • Radiosensitivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research


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