Statin-aspirin double act or lycopene against prostate cancer

Statin-aspirin double act or lycopene against prostate cancer

Studies have shown that taking a statin alongside a small aspirin may reduce aggressive and fatal prostate cancer risk by reducing levels of inflammation; research has shown natural lycopene from tomatoes also does this, without the potential side-effects.

Back in 2003, the FDA approved two common drugs for joint use in the fight against Prostate cancer. The ‘package’ was called Pravigard PAC and combines Pravachol (Pravastatin sodium) with a small buffered aspirin. 

This was a little odd because pravastatin is a hydrophilic statin, and these statins are known to be inferior to lipophilic statins (for example, Atorvastatin, Simvastatin and Lovastatin), which also cross membranes and enter tissues, perfect for fighting cancer.

Pravigard PAC is available in cartons containing either 30 buffered aspirin 1mg or 325mg tablets packed with either 30 Pravachol 20mg, 40mg or 80mg tablets.

In 2020, researchers took a subsection of the Prostate cancer Prevention Trial and reviewed those using aspirin and those using statins (1). They concluded that aspirin users were more likely to have low FoxP3, a T regulatory cell marker and statin users were more likely to have low CD68, a macrophage marker. These results would suggest that these medications each may alter the immune environment in prostate cancer and would lower advanced/fatal prostate cancer risk.

This was not the first time a benefit had been observed. In 2017, researchers studied the effects of low dose aspirin and atorvastatin, singly and in combination with prostate cancer cells in vivo, and with prostate cancer in mice (2).

While each showed some effect alone, the combination was significantly more potent. The researchers concluded, “Results of the present study demonstrated a strong combined effect of atorvastatin and aspirin on inhibiting the growth of prostate cancer cells in vitro and in vivo.”

But there may be another way of getting this anti-inflammatory and fat regulating benefit without resorting to taking a lipophilic statin known to increase dementia risks (3).

Research (4) presented in 2018, showed that lycopene (a natural compound from tomatoes, which alleviates oxidative stress and inflammation) was shown to be a dose dependent ‘chemotherapy agent’ that inhibits prostate cancer progression by suppressing the inflammatory response. (Patients may take 25-60 mg of lycopene with a meal or olive oil.) Importantly, we have also covered that Lycopene reduces aggressive and fatal prostate cancer!

Go to: Lycopene reduces the risk of aggressive and lethal prostate cancer


  1. Cancer Prevention Research AACR publications; Oct 2020; Lauren M. Hurwitz et al -
  2. Combined effects of Atorvastatin and aspirin of growth and apoptosis of human prostate cancer; Oncology Reports, Yan He et al, Jan 4 2017;
  3. Lipophilic statins linked to higher risk of dementia -
  4. Lycopene exerts anti-inflammatory effect to limit prostate cancer progression, Li-Ning Jiang et al; Asian J. Androl, 2018, Sept 7; 21(1).

  Approved by the Medical Board. Click Here 


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