It is a worldwide scandal, recently named as the second leading cause of death globally, according to the Mayo Clinic. Cancer is seriously exhausted, and when rooted in a certain part of the body, it quickly destroys the energy and well-being of the sufferer.
Fortunately, there is ongoing research on how best to fight and cure this disease, and today the survival rate is seen to rise for many cancers.
One of the latest studies looked at how to change the nature of cancer cells. Scientists at the University of Basel in Switzerland have managed not only to prevent the spread of cancer cells, but also to change their makeup for good. They transform carcinogens into fat cells, preventing their uncontrolled division and preventing further metastases.
How does the study work?
During the metastasis process – when cancer cells leave the site of tumor growth and travel for growth in other parts of the body – there is a period in which carcinogens can be temporarily found in immature states, almost in the same way as stem cells . This is known as epithelial mesenchymal transition or EMT, and during this period of change, it is possible to administer different types of changes in cancer cells because they are highly adaptable.
The researchers began breast cancer cell transplant in female mice, following the treatment of two drugs approved by FDA for mice, namely rosiglitizone (used to treat type II diabetes) and trimetinib. While rosiglitazone has the ability to induce the conversion of stem cells into fat cells, trimetinib is an anticancer drug that prevents the spread and growth of cancer cells.
When mice were treated with a cocktail dose of these two drugs during the EMT period, the results showed that some of the breast cancer cells – those that moved away from the main tumor site during metastases – were forced to become harmless fat cells, instead of traveling to grow in other parts of the body. In addition, the combination of rosiglitazone and trimetinib interrupted further metastases and prevented the growth of the main tumor.
This is useful not only because after changing, the fat cell can not be shared further and can not produce more cells, but also because it will not become carcinogens in their lives, allowing them to be safe. Medical News Daily reports that study author Gerhard Christofori, a professor at the Department of Biomedicine, is positive about the approach and how it can be used in further cancer treatments. "In the future," he said, "this innovative therapeutic approach can be used in combination with conventional chemotherapy to suppress the primary tumor growth and the formation of deadly metastases."
The results were published in a newspaper in the journal Cancer cells. Read more about the study here.
Want to know more?
We are all subject to a certain level of cellular mutation due to environmental and genetic factors. Dr. George Demetriou, an oncologist at Watson Medical Center Donald Gordon explains that the older you are, the more time your cells have to undergo risk factors that cause mutations. It is also more likely that they have transmitted these into other cells. This increases the risk of cancer. Click on the link to find out what you need to know about cancer prevention and screening.