09/05/2017 / By Tracey Watson
Where breast or ovarian cancer seems to “run” in a family, both male and female family members are encouraged to undergo testing to see whether they may have mutations in their BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes. These genes are responsible for suppressing tumor proteins, and when they have mutated (or altered), certain types of DNA damage might not be properly repaired, which can cause genetic alterations that can eventually result in cancer. Some of these mutations have been linked to breast and ovarian cancers in women, and other forms of cancer in both men and women. Angelina Jolie is probably the most famous woman in the world to have been diagnosed with a BRCA mutation.
Now, the Daily Mail reports that new research, published in the journal Nature, has found that certain vegetables which are rich in folate can cause the body to produce formaldehyde, causing “lethal damage” to the DNA of these already damaged genes.
This irreversible damage, in turn, can cause the formation of tumors in various parts of the body.
While researchers have been aware for some time that when it is breathed in, formaldehyde can build up in the body, this study is the first to discover that reactions within the body can also cause such a dangerous buildup.
And there is another source of possible danger for women with mutations of the BRCA genes: the formaldehyde found in vaccines. (Related: Discover all you need to know about vaccinations at Vaccines.news.)
In the Nature study, the research team, led by Dr. Ketan Petal of the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology, discovered that formaldehyde buildup can be a by-product of a process known as the “one carbon cycle.”
The Mail explains this process as follows:
This cycle uses folate, commonly known as vitamin B9, to create DNA and essential amino acids, which cells need to function and multiply. Treating laboratory-grown cells with folate lead to the release of formaldehyde, the Government-funded researchers discovered. They speculated this could lethally damage the DNA of mutated BRCA cancer cells that cannot repair this damage. Healthy surrounding cells would not be damaged since they have functioning DNA repair mechanisms, they added.
Dr. Patel explained that the one carbon cycle is a fundamental process of life, and is a building block of DNA and some of the amino acids. Nonetheless, even though this cycle has a positive function in cells, for women with BRCA mutations it can be dangerous.
“Folate and formaldehyde have two faces: a beneficial side because they provide the chemical building blocks for cells to live and grow, and a dangerous side because formaldehyde can damage DNA,” Patel noted.
Since the production of formaldehyde in the body is triggered by folate, women with BRCA mutations are advised to minimize their intake of veggies high in this nutrient, including avocado, asparagus and broccoli.
So, what exactly is formaldehyde? Most of us would immediately think of embalming fluid, and we would be correct. Also present in things as diverse as clothing, food, cigarettes and vaccines, this chemical is on the government’s list of known and probable carcinogens because it can damage DNA. This means that formaldehyde is likely to cause cancer in everyone – not just women with BRCA mutations. Formaldehyde is also found in MDF and plywood, certain building and insulation materials, and gas stoves. (Related: After years of industry delay, formaldehyde and styrene added to carcinogens list.)
Formaldehyde is listed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as an ingredient in the Diphtheria/Tetanus/Polio vaccine, as well as the Hepatitis B and flu shots.
It’s interesting that the research team on this study has been so quick to encourage women with BRCA mutations to avoid green veggies, which at least have other nutritional benefits, but fails to mention the risk of formaldehyde in vaccines. We should all be avoiding vaccines, anyway, but their formaldehyde content makes it even more imperative that women with BRCA mutations give vaccines as wide a berth as possible.
Angelina Jolie, BRCA mutations, BRCA1, BRCA2, breast cancer, folate, formaldehyde, genetic cancers, Ovarian Cancer, vaccines
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