Vitamin K2 and Cancer

Vitamin K2 is an essential lipid soluble vitamin that has three different types: K1, K2 and K3. Albeit Vitamin K is commonly associated with clotting factors or bone health when paired with Vitamin D, it has been reported as potentially useful approach for prevention and clinical treatment of cancer. Vitamin K2 has been found to be milder with minimal side effects while still having function in comparison to other types of Vitamin K.  

Vitamin K2 measured in vitro found to inhibit the proliferation of cancer cells, contributed to cell growth arrest, increasing programmed cell death of cancer cells, inhibiting invasion functionality in cancer cells and synergistic effects in combination with other chemotherapeutics (Xv, 2018).

Liver cancer patients were randomly assigned to receive antineoplastic, sorafenib or sorafenib plus vitamin K2 and found some telling results. Patients were screened for 4 years to find these results in randomized study just published last month:

  • Increased response rate (27.3% vs 4.5%)
  • Extended progression free survival time (4.9 vs 2.9 months)
  • Hazard ratio of 0.044
  • Extended median time of overall survival (26.1 vs 9 months) (Haruna, 2021)

Vitamin K2 appears to be an extremely promising agent with limited toxicity, so consideration should be made in implementing this into clinical therapy.

Haruna, Y., Yakushijin, T. & Kawamoto, S. (2021. Efficacy and safety of sorafenib plus vitamin K treatment for hepatocellular carcinoma: A phase II, randomized study. Cancer Med. 2021 Feb;10(3):914-922. doi: 10.1002/cam4.3674.

Shibayama-Imazu, T., Aiuchi, T. & Nakaya, K. (2008). Vitamin K2-mediated apoptosis in cancer cells: role of mitochondrial transmembrane potential. Vitam Horm. 78:211-26. doi: 10.1016/S0083-6729(07)00010-6.

Xv, F., Chen, J., Duan, L. & Li, S. (2018). Research progress on the anticancer effects of vitamin K2. Oncology Letters. 15: 8926-8934. doi: 10.3892/ol.2018.8502.

If you would like more information, contact Pharmacy Solutions today and speak with one of our pharmacists.

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