Genistein is an isoflavonoid derived from soy products. It inhibits protein-tyrosine kinase and topoisomerase-II (DNA topoisomerase (ATP-hydrolysing)) activity and is used as an antineoplastic and antitumour agent. Experimentally, it has been shown to induce g2 phase arrest in human and murine cell lines.
Genistein is a phytochemical found in soybeans. Soybeans contain a variety of phytochemicals, and in particular they are the only source with nutritionally significant amounts of one type of phytochemical called isoflavones. Foods that contain large amounts of soy are tofu, soy milk, and miso. In soy consuming populations, the concentrations of genistein average 0.28 µM, which is ten-fold higher than that seen in non-soy consuming populations. Much interest has been shown recently in genistein as a chemopreventive agent in prostate cancer. Both epidemiological and migrant studies have demonstrated a correlation between increased isoflavone levels in the serum and urine of Asian men with decreased levels of prostate cancer. Also, in a cross-national study for which data was available from 42 countries, soy products were identified as having a significant protective effect against prostate cancer.
Studies have shown that genistein can bind to the same receptor sites as estrogen. Soybeans are the only significant dietary source of genistein; however, the amount of soy foods necessary to meet the body's needs can be difficult to incorporate into today's diet. In Asia, where soy is a staple, the daily intake can be up to 20 times that of a Western diet. Made from isoflavone-rich soybean powder that yields a consistent standardized isoflavone content. This unique chemical-free process requires approximately 400 pounds of soybeans to yield just one pound of finished product. This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Genistein is made from isoflavone-rich soybean powder that yields a consistent isoflavone content.
Genistein is a potent inhibitor of protein-tyrosine kinase and topoisomerase II, enzymes which are crucial to cellular proliferation. Genistein is also an inhibitor of angiogenesis and several steroid metabolizing enzymes, such as aromatase and 5 alpha-reductase. A NCI-sponsored placebo-controlled clinical trial, Phase I Randomized Study of Genistein in Patients with Stage III or IV Prostate Cancer, has been underway since December 1999 to determine the safety and pharmacokinetics of genistein
The term "soy" is used to refer to many products derived from the soybean. In terms of health and wellness, the two most important dietary supplements derived from soybeans are isolated/concentrated soy proteins and soy extracts which contain a high amount of compounds called isoflavones. The isoflavones have been associated with a wide variety of beneficial health effects including protection from cancer and osteoporosis to reduction in hot flashes and other symptoms of menopause. Soy protein, which may or may not contain a high level of isoflavones (depending on how it is processed) has been associated with a reduction in serum cholesterol and triglyceride levels and may protect against the development of coronary heart disease.
Depending on the method of processing, many soy foods contain a relatively high content of chemical compounds called isoflavones, which possess weak estrogen-like effects. Under conditions of high estrogen exposure, which may promote certain cancers, the isoflavone compounds tend to block the adverse effects of estrogen and may prevent growth of cancer cells. Under conditions of low estrogen exposure, such as during menopause, the isoflavones tend to act as weak estrogens, which may be just enough to help alleviate some of the symptoms associated with menopause, such as hot flashes, headaches and mood swings.
Many beneficial effects have been reported for Genistein, most significantly as an anticancer
agent and as a protection against cancer. While there is controversy over its exact
properties and its risks and benefits, it is certainly one of the most promising substances
now under investigation. There appear to be a number of other beneficial effects as well: notably there are reports that it reduces platelet aggregation and in this gives some protection against heart disease.
Chemically Genistein is an “isoflavone”. It is also what is know as a phytosteroid: that is a plant substance with steroid-like properties. Genistein imitates, in some manner, estrogen (and other sexual hormones). It is thought that it “competes for estrogen receptors” and thus protects against the negative effects of estrogen. (Though there is some controversy about this) it does not seem
to block the necessary functions of the sex hormones (though one paper speaks of a lengthening of the menstrual cycle, others argue this is a normalising and not a surpression). Genistein seems to be particularly helpful in all the “hormone responsive cancers”- breast, ovarian, uterine, prostate -
and also with colon cancer. In all propability Genistein has more than one mode of action. It is reported to also have “angiostatin”-like activity, that is, to surpress the production of new blood vessels like shark cartilage or Folkman’s much vaunted angiostatin and endostatin “cure”.
Chemical Name: 4',5,7-Trihydroxyisoflavone
Molecular formula: C15H10O5
Molecular weight: 270.
CAS Number : 446-72-0
Characteristic: Yellow crystalline powder
Purity (HPLC) : 98.5%min.