Tuesday December 12, 2017

Aspirin can restrict the growth of breast cancer, says Indian- origin researcher

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New York: A study led by an Indian-origin researcher has found a daily dose of aspirin is effective at blocking breast tumour growth in laboratory tests.

Aspirin is used worldwide as a ‘blood thinner’ and to relieve inflammation, pain and fever.

“The trick is to ensure conditions around cancer stem cells are not conducive for reproduction, something aspirin seems to be able to do,” said Sushanta Banerjee, professor at the University of Kansas Medical Centre in the US.

“We could give aspirin after chemotherapy to prevent relapse and keep the pressure on, which we saw was effective in both the laboratory and the mouse model, and we could use it preventatively,” Banerjee noted.

Experts suggest patients to consult with a doctor before starting a daily aspirin regimen. The drug is known to thin the blood and increase the risk of gastrointestinal bleeding.

“Of course there is a risk, but you have to weigh that against the risks of cancer,” Banerjee said.

To test his theory that aspirin could alter the molecular signature in breast cancer cells enough so that they would not spread, Banerjee used both incubated cells and mouse models.

For the cell test, breast cancer cells were placed in 96 separate plates and then incubated. Just over half the cultures were exposed to differing doses of acetylsalicylic acid, commonly known as aspirin.

According to Banerjee, exposure to aspirin dramatically increased the rate of cell death in the test. For those cells that did not die off, many were left unable to grow.

The second part of his study involved studying 20 mice with aggressive tumours.

For 15 days, half of the mice were given the human equivalent of 75 milligrams of aspirin per day, which is considered a low dose.

At the end of the study period, the tumours were weighed. Mice that received aspirin had tumours that were, on an average, 47 percent smaller.

To show that aspirin could also prevent cancer, the researchers gave an additional group of mice aspirin for 10 days before exposing them to cancer cells.

After 15 days, those mice had significantly less cancerous growth than the control group.

“We found aspirin caused these residual cancer cells to lose their self-renewal properties,” Banerjee said.

The study is to appear in the forthcoming issue of the journal Laboratory Investigation. (IANS)

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Reduce the Spread of Cancer With this Protein, According to Research by University of Guelph, Ontario

Researchers have discovered a new protein that could reduce the spread of cancer by binding the cancer cells together and allowing them to invade tissues

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Fight Cancer
Fight Cancer with this Protein. IANS.

New York, Nov 19: Researchers have discovered a new protein that could reduce the spread of cancer by binding the cancer cells together and allowing them to invade tissues.

The study conducted by the researchers from University of Guelph, Ontario, has identified a protein called cadherin-22, a potential factor in cancer metastasis or the spread of cancer.

The protien also decreased the adhesion and invasion rate of breast and brain cancer cells by up to 90 per cent.

“Cadherin-22 could be a powerful prognostic marker for advanced cancer stages and patient outcomes,” said lead author Jim Uniacke, a professor at the varsity.

“If you can find a treatment or a drug that can block cadherin-22, you could potentially prevent cancer cells from moving, invading and metastasizing.”

The study, published in the journal Oncogene, looks specifically at hypoxia, a condition in which the tissues receive less oxygen.

The researchers found that it is precisely under conditions of low oxygen that cancer cells trigger the production of cadherin-22, putting in motion a kind of protein boost that helps bind cells together, enhancing cellular movement, invasion and likely metastasis.

Studying breast and brain cancer cells in a hypoxia incubator, the researchers discovered that cadherin-22 is involved in this process to enable the spread of cancer cells.

For both cancer types, the research team used molecular tools to reduce the amount of cadherin-22.

They placed the human cancer cells into the incubator and lowered the oxygen to a level comparable to that in a tumour. The cells failed to spread.

“One very powerful and common tool in cell and molecular biology labs is, you can remove a protein from a cell and see how that cell behaves without it.

“We culture our cancer cells in this very low-oxygen environment, and they start behaving like they are inside a low-oxygen tumour,” Uniacke added. (IANS)

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Women can Boost their Working Memory with Hormone Therapy

Benefits of oestrogen therapy in women.

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oestrogen therapy can increase working memory under stress
oestrogen therapy can increase working memory under stress. wikimedia commons

New York, Nov 5: Undergoing a type of hormone replacement therapy — used for menopausal treatment — may help protect as well as improve working memory for some women as they age, according to a new study.

Hormone replacement therapy uses female hormones – oestrogen and progesterone – to treat common symptoms of menopause and ageing.

The findings showed that women taking oestrogen-only therapy had lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol and performed better on tests of “working memory” following exposure to stress compared to women taking a placebo.

“Our study suggests that oestrogen treatment after menopause protects the memory that is needed for short-term cognitive tasks from the effects of stress,” said lead author Alexandra Ycaza Herrera, a researcher at the University of Southern California – Davis.

To measure the effect of oestrogen therapy on working memory under stress, the team recruited 42 women with an average age of 66.

Half of the postmenopausal women had been on estradiol — a type of oestrogen therapy — for approximately five years, while the others had received a placebo.

The researchers, in the paper published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, collected saliva to measure the women’s levels of cortisol, oestrogen, and progesterone.

They also ran a test of working memory called a “sentence span task”, in which the women were each given a series and then asked whether each sentence made sense. They also were asked to recall the last word of each one.

While women receiving oestrogen therapy had a smaller increase in cortisol and showed no decrease in working memory function, even after being exposed to stressful situation, those taking the placebo experienced a spike in cortisol levels as well as demonstrated a decrease in working memory function.

Previous studies have pointed to potential health risks — the Ahigher risk of breast cancer, heart disease, stroke and blood clots — of the treatment.

Thus, Herrera noted that “hormone replacement therapy may not be right for every woman, but women need to be able to have the conversation with their doctors”.(IANS)

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Daily aspirin use may cut digestive cancer risk | Health News

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Aspirin

Hong Kong, October’31: Individuals who regularly use pain reliever aspirin are likely to experience a significant reduction in digestive cancer risk, finds a study involving over 600,000 people.

The findings showed that patients who were prescribed aspirin daily showed a 47 per cent reduction in liver and oesophageal cancer incidence.

 Gastric cancer reduced by 38 per cent, pancreatic cancer by 34 per cent while colorectal cancer by 24 per cent, it said.

Digestive cancers account for almost a quarter of cancer cases in Europe.

Colorectal, gastric and pancreatic cancer are within the top five cancer killers throughout the continent, with digestive cancers representing 30.1 per cent of cancer deaths.

“The findings demonstrate that the long-term use of aspirin can reduce the risk of developing many major cancers,” said lead researcher Kelvin Tsoi, Professor at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

“What should be noted is the significance of the results for cancers within the digestive tract, where the reductions in cancer incidence were all very substantial, especially for liver and oesophageal cancer,” Tsoi added.

The results were presented at the 25th United European Gastroenterology Week in Barcelona.

Moreover, the effect of long-term use of aspirin was also seen in significant reduction in leukaemia, lung and prostate cancers and some breast, bladder, kidney and multiple myeloma cancers.

For the study, the team compared patients who were prescribed aspirin over a long period (for at least six months, average duration of aspirin prescribed was 7.7 years) with non-aspirin users.

Whilst the use of aspirin is debated within the medical community, a recent study also found that patients who stopped taking aspirin were 37 per cent more likely to have an adverse cardiovascular event, such as a heart attack or stroke, than those who continued with their prescription, the researchers noted.(IANS)