Fat Cells Fuel and Spread Cancer, as confirmed by study in mice

Admin | Published 2016-12-07 22:16

A new study may put as back on track in keeping our health in check and that usually equates shedding the extra fat off but at the same time maintaining high levels of energy.

Photo by medicalnewstoday.com

We all know that fats mostly cause us harm than good. This study reaffirms that fact especially when we also deal or apprehensive about cancer.

Most cancer cells are known to self-destruct when being carried outside its origin or natural environment. Should the journey transpire, it could not survive before it arrives in its destination. But the recent study conducted published on 7 December in Nature has found out that cancer cells can feed on fat to fuel the trip.

Cancer cells spread throughout the body through the process of metastasis. But it is not clearly determined how cancer cells survive and how they were able to do so.

Salvador Aznar Benitah of the Institute for Research in Biomedicine at the Barcelona Institute of Science and Technology in Spain and his colleagues involved in the said study were able to identify a population of oral tumour cells which were able to make the journey in mice. They tracked a molecules in some population called CD36 which is capable of taking up lipids from their environment. These lipids could serve as an energy source of the straying tumour cells. It takes a lot of energy for metastasis to occur. Benitah and his team discovered that it required high CD36 expression for metastasis to transpire even in mice. They found out that the antibodies that blocked CD36 prevented the metastasis. However the development of primary tumours were left unaffected. The researchers go through databases to check on cases where there were high levels of CD36 involved. They found out that high CD36 corresponded with poor medical outcomes in bladder, lung, breast and other cancers in people. The team is working on developing antibodies that can fight CD36. Benitah noted that such treatment can be helpful in combating tumours even after the cancer has already spread. In an experiment in mice, 15% of tumours got erradicated by the antibodies while 80% shriveled. In a separate experiment where they fed mice with high-fat diet resulted to spread and growth of tumours n the lymph nodes and lungs — a sign of metastasis — compared with mice on normal diets. Ernst Lengyel, a gynaecological oncologist at the University of Chicago in Illinois, who was not involved in the project stressed that it would be careless to tell people to avoid fatty foods especially people with cancer who may need high-energy diet. See: Fatal Combo of Food and Meds That Should Be Avoided! Source: nature.com
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