Welcome to the Botanical Estrogen Research Center

Many women who wish to maintain healthy aging, seek relief from menopausal symptoms, or believe they might obtain benefit for prevention or treatment of breast cancer, use botanical dietary supplements such as soy, licorice root, wild yam, and dong quai. These botanical estrogens are consumed by women hoping to obtain from "natural", non-pharmaceutical sources, the known benefits of estrogens without the risks.The biological activities of estrogens, their potential health benefits and risks, and their role in healthy aging are multi-faceted: they span many target tissues, are dose-dependent and target-tissue specific, and function through two receptors and by both nuclear and extranuclear pathways.

With botanical estrogens, however, little is known about these aspects, so there is little basis for understanding how these compounds might be impacting human health. To address this unmet public health need, we propose to develop a Botanical Research Center (BRC) with a thematic focus on the efficacy, safety, and mechanism of action of botanical estrogens currently being consumed by women.

Little is known about the activities and safety of botanical dietary supplements being widely consumed by women to obtain from "natural" sources the benefits of estrogens without the risks. Our Botanical Research Center will provide basic information on how botanical estrogens work and the activities that they exhibit, offering a new conceptual framework through which their efficacy and safety can be better understood.

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Project #1 - Molecular Mechanisms & Cellular Pathways of Botanical Estrogen Activity
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Project #2 - Botanical Estrogen Actions in Bone, Uterus, Mammary, & Breast Cancer Metastasis
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Project #3 - Botanical Estrogens & Cognitive Function