Saturday November 23, 2019

Is their a link between sugar consumption and cancer? Scientists may finally be able to explain how tumors grow!

Previously, it was a topic of debate whether Warburg Effect was a symptom of cancer, or a cause of cancer.

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Can sugar contribute to growth of cancer in your body? Pixabay

Belgium, October 28, 2017: Is your sugar consumption causing, or spreading cancer in your body?

A new study published in the journal Nature Communications claims to have found the connection between sugar and cancer and scientists may finally be able to explain how tumors grow.

The nine-year-old study has revealed that cancer cells break down sugars at a faster rate than other cells which consequently stimulates the growth of tumors.

Scientists Study the Warburg Effect

Belgian scientists Veerle Janssens, Wim Versées and Johan Thevelein from VIB, KU Leuven, and Vrije Universiteit Brussel had first begun researching about sugar’s potential link to cancer in 2008 in an attempt to understand the Warburg Effect.

The Warburg Effect: First observed in 1924 by Otto Warburg, the Warburg Effect is a prominent feature of cancerous cells and if often put to use to detect brain tumors.

In simple terms, tumor cells make energy by rapidly breaking down proteins, which is not seen in normal cells. It is this energy that is fueling the growth of tumors.

The Study

For their research, scientists used yeast as a model organism as, like cancer cells, it employs a similar mechanism to produce energy from sugar- through fermentation.

Yeast also contains the ‘Ras’ proteins that are also found in cancer.

ALSO READ Sweet Tooth? Curb your Sugar Cravings with 7 Simple Steps!

Ras proteins are known to control the growth of cells in our body. If the genes that control Ras proteins mutate, they can cause an increased cell growth and an intensive production of cancer cells.

Thus, using yeast, the Belgian researchers analyzed the link between high sugar metabolism and Ras.

What Did The Study Reveal?

All cells in the body require sugar, but research has found that cancerous cells consume more sugar when compared to normal cells, breaking it down into glucose, which is then fermented into lactic acid. It is this fermentation that aids the spread of the tumor.

Previously, it was a topic of debate whether Warburg Effect was a symptom of cancer or a cause of cancer. The new study has revealed that it actually aids and stimulates cancerous tumors. However, this does not necessarily mean that sugar is causing cancer.

Explaining the “strength of the Warburg effect and tumor aggressiveness”, the study explains the consequences of the interaction of cancerous cells with sugar.

While these findings are monumental, scientists are not calling it a medical breakthrough. According to Prof. Johan Thevelein from KU Leuven in Belgium, the study will provide a foundation for future cancer research which will hopefully yield precise results.

– prepared by Soha Kala of NewsGram. Twitter @SohaKala

 

Next Story

Beware! Velvety ‘Triple Palms’ Can be Sign of Lung Cancer

"All patients with tripe palms should be evaluated with a full diagnostic work-up for an associated malignancy, particularly lung or gastric carcinoma," wrote the researchers

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Velvety palms constitute a rare medical condition known as 'tripe palms', due to their resemblance to the rippled appearance of the stomach lining of cows, pigs or sheep. Pixabay

In a rare medical condition, a 73-year-old Brazilian woman was diagnosed with lung cancer after she showed up at a dermatologist’s clinic with velvety ‘triple palms’.

An elderly smoker who acknowledged that she’d gone through a pack of cigarettes every day for 30 years, the woman was suffering from painful lesions on her hands.

According to Science Alert that cited a case published in a paper in The New England Journal of Medicine, she also had cough for about a year, and had lost 5 kg in the last four months alone.

“Physical examination revealed sharp demarcation of the folds in the lines of her hands in addition to a velvety appearance of palmar surfaces and ridging of the skin,” her doctors wrote in the case report.

Velvety palms constitute a rare medical condition known as ‘tripe palms’, due to their resemblance to the rippled appearance of the stomach lining of cows, pigs or sheep.

Cancer
Cancer Ribbon. Pixabay

Sometimes called acanthosis palmaris, such tripe palms fall under skin disorder.

In the case of this 73-year-old patient, a CT scan revealed irregularities in her lungs.

Also Read: Microsoft Announces an Update for Cloud Contracts Following EU Privacy Probe

A subsequent biopsy confirmed the diagnosis of adenocarcinoma, and she underwent chemotherapy and radiation therapy, said the report.

“All patients with tripe palms should be evaluated with a full diagnostic work-up for an associated malignancy, particularly lung or gastric carcinoma,” wrote the researchers. (IANS)