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nightsurfer on 2009-12-23"NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - An herb used since ancient times to treat liver ailments may help reduce the liver damage caused by some cancer drugs, a study published Monday suggests.
In a study of 50 children undergoing chemotherapy for acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), researchers found that an herb called milk thistle appeared to reduce treatment-related liver inflammation.
The study, published online in the journal Cancer, is the first clinical trial to test the herb in children undergoing chemotherapy, and the investigators caution that more research is still needed.
However, the findings are "promising" -- particularly since there is currently no way to help protect the liver from chemotherapy-induced damage, said senior researcher Dr. Kara M. Kelly, a pediatric oncologist at Columbia University Medical Center in New York."