Spirulina Enhances Anti-Cancer ‘Natural Killer Cell’ Abilities

General Health

spirulina“Natural killer cells” sound like cells you don’t want to run into in a dark alley. Well, if you’re a tumor cell or a virus, that’s true. These cells have unique abilities to recognize foreign invaders in the body and eradicate them. Recent research indicates spirulina, an algae found largely in fresh water, is able to activate these cells and use them to target tumors.

Spirulina is an ancient super-food, used for centuries as a natural medicine. It’s good for your eyes, skin, blood sugar, and it’s a cancer-fighter. A recent study from the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at Hokkaido University Graduate School of Medicine in Japan indicates spirulina’s tumor fighting abilities may come from its ability to boost “natural killer cells.”

“Oral administration of hot-water extract of Spirulina, cyanobacterium Spirulina platensis, leads to augmentation of NK cytotoxicity in humans. Here, we applied to syngeneic tumor-implant mice (C57BL/6 versus B16 melanoma) Spirulina to elucidate the mechanism of raising antitumor NK activation…Spirulina and BCG-cell wall skeleton synergistically augmented IFN-gamma production and antitumor potential in the B16D8 versus C57BL/6 system. We infer from these results that NK activation by Spirulina has some advantage in combinational use with BCG-cell wall skeleton for developing adjuvant-based antitumor immunotherapy.”

Read: 5 Ways to Boost Natural Killer Cells

The researchers implanted tumors into mice. They then administered spirulina orally and watched the mice for molecular signals. As they watched, the mice went through changes indicating killer cell activation. The implanted melanoma cells slowly regressed under the fire of these killers, until they annihilated the entire tumor.

As NaturalNews reports:

“Molecular communications with in vitro bone-marrow-derived dendritic cells showed further natural killer cell activation properties that were derived from the oral spirulina treatments. Furthermore, through studies of cellular communication, the researchers noted that spirulina enhances NK activation against tumors through one specific pathway in the mice. A specific immune cell also worked in coordination with spirulina to exert synergistic antitumor activity. This BCG cell wall skeleton worked with spirulina to boost IFN gamma production, strengthening antitumor potential. When the two are used simultaneously, natural killer cells increase down the specific MYD88 pathway, creating an antitumor immunotherapy advantage.”

In addition to being a cancer-fighter, this deep sea superfood has numerous other benefits. It’s rich in protein and nutrients, and it’s a good source of antioxidants. It helps purify the blood and can aid in detoxing heavy metals like mercury and arsenic.