New cancer drug reduces tumor size by ‘up to 50 percent’

(TIM NEWMAN, MEDICAL NEWS TODAY) New research from the University of Southampton in the United Kingdom investigates the way in which cancer takes over certain cell types and uses them as a life support. Finding a way to target these turncoat cells could help to reduce a tumor’s success.

PHOTO: Fibroblast cells, ZEISS Microscopy, Creative Commons

One of the many reasons that cancer is so difficult to treat is its ability to hijack normal cellular components and switch them from useful to deadly.

Cancer can therefore turn vital, natural cell types against the body. As Dr. Aine McCarthy, Cancer Research UK’s senior science information officer, says, “Some cancers are incredibly difficult to treat and can use the body’s own cells to help them grow, evade treatment, and spread around the body. Researchers have been trying to unlock the secrets behind this for many years.”

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As Dr. Aine McCarthy, Cancer Research UK’s senior science information officer, says, “Some cancers are incredibly difficult to treat and can use the body’s own cells to help them grow, evade treatment, and spread around the body. Researchers have been trying to unlock the secrets behind this for many years.”

The findings of the most recent study in this field, carried out by researchers at the University of Southampton, are published this week in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

An example of the repurposing of the body’s biological mechanisms involves fibroblasts. Normally, these cells make a range of products, such as collagen and elastic fibers, helping to fix organs and cells together. However, cancer can utilize these cells for its own purpose, turning them into cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs).  READ THE FULL STORY AT MEDICAL NEWS TODAY

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