Salvestrols are naturally occurring plant derived compounds (phytonutrients). Salvestrols are essential for wellbeing and because they cannot be made in the body they must therefore be supplied through our diet.

As a group, they are chemically unrelated substances except for the similar manner in which they confer their benefits, that is, as a result of their action with the CYP1B1 enzyme. This CYP1B1 enzyme is over expressed in malfunctioning cells and not present in normal healthy cells. The metabolites produced through metabolism of Salvestrols by the CYP1B1 enzyme result in the suppression and death of these malfunctioning or diseased cells.

Salvestrols where discovered in 1998 as a result of the combined research of Professor Dan Burke, a pharmacologist, and Professor Gerry Potter, Professor of Medicinal Chemistry and Director of the Cancer Drug Discovery Group at Leicester’s De Montfort University. Professor Potter had spent almost 20 years designing synthetic cancer drugs but realised along the way that plants have similar chemicals that could prove to be beneficial in the treatment of cancer.

The collaboration of the two research directors-Professors Dan Burke and Gerry Potter-resulted in the discovery that a group of natural dietary compounds-Salvestrols-exerted similar effects to those they were seeking to exact by the use of synthetic pharmaceuticals, and as a result their focus now lies entirely within the realm of natural products.

Salvestrol is a new name Potter coined to describe this group of natural compounds from the Latin word salve, meaning ‘to save’.

Salvestrols are a spinout from a drug discovery programme which has already delivered several major pharmaceutical products considered to be key in their class and others which are currently undergoing clinical trials.

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