Tuesday October 22, 2019

Common Diabetes Drug May Offer Treatment For Breast Cancer, Says Study

However, neither of the drugs were originally designed to treat cancer

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Cancer
Cancer Ribbon. Pixabay
Repurposing a common diabetes drug as well as another used for treating a group of inherited and acquired disorders may also help in the fight against resistant breast cancers that currently have no targeted therapy, finds a study.
The study, led by the University of Chicago, showed that the two existing drugs named metformin and haemin suppress tumour growth in mice, Xinhua reported.
“This is the first joint use of these two drugs. We think we have elucidated a new mechanism, something basic and fundamental, and found ways to use it,” said Marsha Rosner, Professor at the varsity.
The researchers found that the primary anti-cancer target for haemin is a transcription factor known as BACH1 (BTB and CNC homology1). This protein is often highly expressed in triple negative breast cancers and is required for metastasis.
BACH1 targets mitochondrial metabolism and can suppress a key source of cellular energy. When BACH1 is high, this energy source is shut down, the report said.
However, when cancer cells were treated with haemin, BACH1 was reduced, causing BACH1-depleted cancer cells to change metabolic pathways. This caused cancers that are vulnerable to metformin to suppress mitochondrial respiration.
Diabetes
Representational image. Pixabay
“We found that this novel combination, haemin plus metformin, can suppress tumour growth, and we validated this in mouse tumour models,” explained Jiyoung Lee from the varsity.
The findings can extend beyond breast cancer.
BACH1 expression is enriched not only in triple negative breast cancers, but is also seen in many other cancers including lung, kidney, uterus, prostate and acute myeloid leukemia, the researchers noted.
However, neither of the drugs were originally designed to treat cancer.
Metformin, discovered in 1922 and used clinically since 1957, was developed to treat Type-2 diabetes. It decreases glucose production by the liver and increases insulin sensitivity.
Haemin, marketed as panhematin, was first crystallised from blood in 1853. It is now used to treat defects of haemin synthesis. These defects can cause porphyrias, a group of inherited and acquired disorders. (IANS)

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Rotavirus Relates to Development of Type 1 Diabetes

Researchers suggests that Rotavirus infection might play a role in the generation of Type 1 Diabetes

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Diabetes
Rotavirus vaccination can contribute to the primary prevention of Type 1 Diabetes. Pixabay

Researchers from the University of Melbourne have found that rotavirus infection might play a role in the development of type 1 diabetes.

Rotavirus remains the major cause of infantile gastroenteritis worldwide, although the advent of vaccination has substantially decreased associated mortality.

Following the recent introduction of rotavirus vaccination, there has been a 15 per cent decrease in the incidence of type 1 diabetes in Australian children under four years of age.

“Vaccination against rotavirus may have the additional benefit in some children of being a primary prevention for type 1 diabetes,” said the study’s lead author Leonard C. Harrison.

Diabetes
The recent introduction of rotavirus vaccination, there has been a 15 per cent decrease in the incidence of type 1 Diabetes in Australian children. Pixabay

The study published in the journal PLOS suggested that rotavirus vaccination could contribute to the primary prevention of this autoimmune disease.

This finding complements human and animal studies implicating rotavirus in the development of type 1 diabetes in genetically susceptible children.

In the article, the research team begin by reviewing molecular evidence supporting their hypothesis and point out the association between rotavirus infection and serum islet autoantibodies.

Diabetes
Rotavirus infection might play a role in the development of type 1 Diabetes. Pixabay

The results showed that rotavirus infection-induced pancreatic pathology, as well as environmental factors that promote the rise in the incidence of type 1 diabetes.

After reviewing population-level data, the study suggested that rotavirus vaccination might be associated with a decrease in the incidence of type 1 diabetes.

According to the researchers, it will be important to identify which children are most likely to be protected by rotavirus vaccination.

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Moreover, future studies should aim to reveal disease mechanisms and directly demonstrate whether rotavirus infects human pancreas prior to the onset of islet autoimmunity or type 1 diabetes. (IANS)