Colon cancer, or colorectal cancer, is a type of cancer that affects the large intestine and rectum. The incidence rate of this cancer ranks fourth globally for all types of cancer.
In Indonesia, according to Global Cancer Statistics (Globocan), it is the second-highest cancer that affects men, with a total of 30,017 new cases in 2018. The current treatment for colon cancer still relies on the success of surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy.
Attempting to address the issue of colon cancer incidence, five UGM students, part of the Student Creativity Program in Exact Sciences Research, namely Atikah Nurunnissa’, Anisa Dewi Rahayu, Latief Al Umami, Ilma Tazkiya, and Dwi Ardiansyah Mustofa from the Faculty of Biology, explored natural materials as a safer colon cancer remedy, one of which is pineapple.
Anisa Rahayu explained that pineapples are one of the fruits found in Indonesia with the potential for anticancer properties through its core, peel, and crown.
“Our country ranks fourth as the largest pineapple-producing country in the world. The pineapple’s core, peel, and crown contribute 50% of the total weight of the pineapple,” said Rahayu on Wednesday (November 23).
“These parts contain phenolic compounds, terpenoids, and bromelain enzymes that have the potential as anticancer agents.”
Under the guidance of Dr. Woro Anindito Sri Tunjung, the team extracted the core, peel, and crown of the pineapple for anticancer properties through the fermentation process to break down complex compounds into derivative compounds.
To accelerate the fermentation process, Rahayu and her team used Rhizopus oryzae fungus as a fermentation starter to enhance the value and content of anticancer compounds.
“The success of the fermentation process has been proven to produce more specific anticancer derivative compounds,” she said.
Author: Gusti Grehenson