Below is the introduction to ‘Salvestrols – Natural Plant-Derived Anticancer Compounds’ by Professor Dan Burke and Professor Gerry Potter as reported in the British Naturopathic Journal, Vol. 23, No. 1, 2006. The link of which appears at the end of this introduction.

‘Eating fruit, vegetables and herbs is good for our health. Many members of the public, a majority of the medical and healing professions, many scientists and several Governments all accept this, and medical advice is to eat at least five portions of fruit or vegetables each day. The medical and scientific evidence shows that a diet rich in fruit and vegetables helps to combat cancer, amongst other diseases. But how do fruit, vegetables and herbs ward off cancer? And how can we maximise this protection? There is probably more than just one single mechanism whereby plants are able to act against human cancer, and there are several scientifically researched and published theories, but no definitive answers.

It is also the case that conventional chemotherapy against cancer, using synthetic drugs, is beset by widespread and severely debilitating side effects.

A team of research scientists and natural products specialists in Leicester believe that a group of natural plant compounds called Salvestrols may provide part of the answer. They believe that Salvestrols can, on the one hand, help to explain how plants prevent cancer, and on the other hand offer a treatment for cancer with far fewer side effects.

The Salvestrol Concept explains how the body defends and heals itself from cancer, using natural plant compounds in the diet and a special enzyme in cancer cells. It is based on the combined research of Professor Gerry Potter (a medicinal chemist) and Professor Dan Burke (a pharmacologist), together with Nature’s Defence (UK) Ltd (a manufacturer of natural products). Salvestrols are a new class of natural anticancer chemicals, which are found in plants and safely eaten in the diet. Initially non-toxic to the body’s normal cells, Salvestrols become activated inside human cancer cells by a special enzyme, CYP1B1 (pronounced "sip one bee one”). The activated Salvestrols then cause the cancer cells to stop growing or die, without harming normal cells. This specificity of action is possible because CYP1B1 is an intrinsic component of cancer cells and occurs in all of the wide range of different types of cancer that have been studied to date, but is to all intents and purposes absent from normal cells.


Salvestrols are not a single chemical type of plant compound, but are defined on the basis of their mechanism of anticancer action as summarized above. Moreover, it is now clear that several food plants and plant-rich diets that have traditionally been considered to offer protection against cancer can be good sources of Salvestrols. Salvestrols can be particularly high in many red or green health-giving plant species, including fruit, berries, vegetables and herbs. Good natural sources of Salvestrols include strawberries, cranberries, oranges, tangerines and grapes. Olives are also a good source of Salvestrols. Several herbs contain appreciable levels of Salvestrols, including basil, parsley, sage, rosemary, thyme, mint, artichoke, scutellaria and the roots of milk thistle and dandelion. Unfortunately modern agricultural practices have succeeded in minimizing the levels of Salvestrols in fruits and vegetables, through a combination of the development of modern plant varieties, the use of agrochemical crop sprays and the selective processing of harvested fruit. Recent research into the sources of Salvestrols has revealed that levels of these compounds are up to 30-fold higher in organic produce.

A main reason why fruits produce Salvestrols is that many of these compounds are natural anti-pathogenic agents, which the plants produce in response to attack by pathogens. However, when fruit crops are routinely sprayed with synthetic agrochemicals they rarely get attacked by the pathogens and so lack the main stimulus to produce Salvestrols.

Many Salvestrols are bitter tasting and for this reason they are sometimes deliberately removed by manufacturers from fruit juice. Salvestrols generally do not dissolve readily in water and so are found more in the skins, pulp and stones of fruit rather than in the pure juice. Consequently, when fruit juices are clarified much of their Salvestrol content is removed.

Furthermore, traditional wine-making techniques, which ban the use of agrochemicals on the vines and ferment the grapes in contact with their skins, tend to give higher levels of Salvestrols in the ensuing wine compared to modern winemaking techniques, in which the pulp of grapes from agrochemical-treated vines is separated from the skins before fermentation. This is because (i) the absence of pathogens encourages the grapes to produce Salvestrols and (ii) the alcohol that is formed during the fermentation process dissolves the Salvestrols out of the grape skins (Salvestrols being poorly soluble in water). For different reasons, traditionally milled cloudy olive oil often has higher levels of Salvestrols than clear oil produced using modern methods.

Older varieties of several fruits have higher Salvestrol contents than newer varieties. This is probably because the newer varieties have been selected for their sweeter taste (Salvestrols are bitter-tasting) and any greater susceptibility to pathogens (due to their lower Salvestrol levels) is overcome by modern agrochemical-dependent methods of agriculture’.

Below is the link to the complete discussion of the above article ‘Salvestrols – Natural Plant-Derived Anticancer Compounds’ by Professor Dan Burke and Professor Gerry Potter as reported in the British Naturopathic Journal, Vol. 23, No. 1, 2006 complete with schematic diagrams.

Professor Dan Burke’s seven part presentation at The Shen Clinic:

David Icke speaking about Salvestrols too wherein he talks of Professor Burkes and Professor Gerry Potters excellent work 

Patrick Holford to whose web site I subscribe has cited this article from Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine Vol. 22, No. 4, 2007h

Health Action Network Society provides this overview of case studies

and also

Here is a Canadian web site

and a supplier  

On Saturday 12th may 2012 I received an e-mail from Dr Brian Schaefer of Acquired Intelligence Inc Victoria British Columbia Canada commenting on the above salvestrol article. He advised me he has just published a new book 'Salvestrols - Nature's Defence Against Cancer' and offered me a copy. Here is a link to the preface of his book  

and a link about the author

and the link to is web site