The journal Cell Reports released a revolutionary study today showcasing a newly developed treatment which may be a large leap forward in the long-running path to beat cancer.
Researchers at Universite catholique de Louvain’s Institute of Experimental and Clinical Research in Brussels, Belgium have identified a group of compounds that succeeded in preventing the growth of tumors in mice. The tumors on the mice were modeled after human tumors. The process that leads to the growth of a tumor and the eventual spread of an aggressive cancer is known as metastasis. The researchers in Brussels managed to find one method to essentially block this harmful process.
Professor Pierre Sonveaux and his team focused on the mitochondria in tumor cells, which helps to regulate their growth and is a key supporter of metastasis. Researchers showed that in certain scenarios, “superoxide ions” are overproduced in the mitochondria, which can lead to metastasis and result in the spread of an aggressive cancer. The compounds that succeeded in preventing tumor growth in mice acted as blocks to prevent the production of superoxide ions. Blocking the formation of the ions successfully blocked the process of metastasis.
These groundbreaking results could have a very large impact on cancer treatments in the future as well as on the way that we approach and understand metastasis. The researchers who developed the study hope to eventually replicate their results in a clinical environment. With cancer being amongst the leading causes of death in our nation, research like Professor Sonveaux’s is crucial for the promotion of longevity and scientific progress.