Cancer has the terrifying ability to spread from any part of the body to another – and it’s part of what has always made these debilitating diseases so deadly. This process, known as metastasis, has always baffled scientists. Researchers may now have a better understanding of how cancer spreads thanks to a recent study. This could lead to more effective treatment options.
The breakthrough in how cancer spreads came about during research conducted by a team based at the Cancer Research UK (CRUK) Cambridge Institute at the University of Cambridge. The researchers found that blocking the activity of certain proteins, like the NALCN protein, can also trigger the metastasis of cancer cells in mice. The long-running struggle to discover new treatments for cancer is a difficult one. A radioactive gel has been developed by doctors to kill skin cancer cells ,. Some have also discovered that Viagra can be used as an anticancer drug ,.
This new research could have given us a much-needed breakthrough in understanding why and how cancer spreads the way that it does. This could lead to new treatments. Researchers discovered that NALCN protein could also prevent healthy cells traveling to other areas of the body, in addition to spreading cancer cells via metastasis.
When the NALCN protein was removed, the researchers saw healthy cells from the pancreas migrating to the kidney, becoming healthy kidney cells. These findings led researchers to believe that metastasis may be an abnormal mechanism in the spread of cancer.
This is significant news because metastasis, the main way cancer cells move from one part of the body into another is how it is transmitted. And, since healthy cells can also utilize this transferring process, it may allow for more treatment options to be developed in the future. Understanding how cancer spreads has always been a key part of finding new ways to treat it.
The researchers published a paper on their findings in Nature Genetics.
Looking for more science news? Scientists recently treated terminal cancer using a modified herpes virus. Plus, a professor rediscovered a “miracle plant” previously believed to have been extinct for over 2,000 years.
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