Is Iodine A Gatekeeper of the Integrity of the Mammary Gland?

  • Carmen AcevesEmail author
  • Brenda Anguiano
  • Guadalupe Delgado


This paper reviews evidence showing iodine as an antioxidant and antiproliferative agent contributing to the integrity of normal mammary gland. Seaweed is an important dietary component in Asian communities and a rich source of iodine in several chemical forms. The high consumption of this element (25 times more than in Occident) has been associated with the low incidence of benign and cancer breast disease in Japanese women. In animal and human studies, molecular iodine (I2) supplementation exerts a suppressive effect on the development and size of both benign and cancer neoplasias. This effect is accompanied by a significant reduction in cellular lipoperoxidation. Iodine, in addition to its incorporation into thyroid hormones, is bound into antiproliferative iodolipids in the thyroid called iodolactones, which may also play a role in the proliferative control of mammary gland. We propose that an I2 supplement should be considered as an adjuvant in breast cancer therapy.


mammary gland iodine deiodinase breast cancer antioxidant lipoperoxidation 



hydrogen peroxide


molecular iodine






iodine free radical


oxidized iodine species






potassium iodide






sodium iodide symporter


single oxygen


superoxide anions


hydroxyl radicals




peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor


reactive oxygen species








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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Carmen Aceves
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Brenda Anguiano
    • 1
  • Guadalupe Delgado
    • 1
  1. 1.Instituto de NeurobiologíaUniversidad Nacional Autónoma de MéxicoJuriquillaMéxico
  2. 2.Instituto de NeurobiologíaUniversidad Nacional Autónoma de MéxicoJuriquillaMéxico;

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