In 2000, I wrote an extensive article on lactoferrin, a peptide with some truly interesting studies that suggest it has a wide range of benefits to human beings. The article was published in the October 2000 issue of the Life Extension Magazine and was titled “Lactoferrin: The Bioactive Peptide that Fights Disease.” The article summarized an extensive body of research showing lactoferrin to have immune boosting, anti cancer, anti microbial, anti inflammatory, and anti oxidant properties, to name a few benefits. Recent research continues to find a wide range of potential benefits to this bio active peptide derived from whey proteins. As it’s been over a decade since I wrote that article (man how times flies!) I decided it was time for an update using more recent research. What follows is what I turned up, and it only adds to my positive opinion of this amazing peptide!
Recent cancer findings:
A 2010 study in the Journal of Dairy Science (1) called “The effect of bovine milk lactoferrin on human breast cancer cell lines” gave additional support to lactoferrin as an anti cancer nutrient. In this study specifically, lactoferrin’s effects on human breast cancer cell lines. The authors of this study summarized well the effects of this bio-active peptide; “Lactoferrin is an iron-binding protein that has been reported to inhibit several types of cancer.”
In this study, the authors tested lactoferrin on human breast cancer HS578T and T47D cells. Cells treated with lactoferrin had approximately a 2-fold increase in apoptosis (programmed cell death) for both cell lines. Proliferation of these cancer cells rates decreased by 40.3 and 63.9% for both breast cancer cell lines respectively. The authors concluded “…this work suggest that lactoferrin interferes with some of the most important steps involved in cancer development.” This study supports many prior studies that find bovine (derived from cows milk) lactoferrin is a powerful anti cancer peptide.