Remember meForgot password?
    Log in with Twitter

article imageStopping the spread of cancer: new protein and method found

By Paul Wallis     Dec 29, 2007 in Health
The ability of cancer to spread is its most effective weapon. For decades, I’ve seen sufferers fighting this damn disease, getting rid of it only to have it show up again somewhere else. Now, a relatively simple thing like a protein might stop it cold.
I lost three family members, including my mother in six months to this filthy obscenity, so it’s not exactly my favorite disease.
It’s therefore a pleasure to report that British researchers have found a way of using a naturally occurring body protein as the methodology to block the spread.
From the Sydney Morning Herald:
In the new study, led by Michael Way, of Cancer Research UK's London Research Institute, scientists have found a way to copy the body's own protection system, which tries to prevent tumours from moving around.
Cancers spread thanks to a protein called mena, which is found in excessive amounts in all tumours. A second protein, tes, stops this movement by attaching itself to mena - but normally there is so much mena in cancer cells that tes cannot do its job
It’s not that surprising that there would be a backup mechanism in normal body chemistry to handle renegade cells.
The body actually contains a lot of regulators for cell reproduction, specifically to ensure accurate replication. There are also growth inhibitors, which exist as added failsafes, to make sure cells stick to the script.
Folic acid, the B vitamin recommended for pregnant women, is another regulator, as is the B group member choline. The body does a lot of prevention work against cancer, and tes is yet another example of the powerful self-regulatory internal defence system doctors have been trying to tap into for decades.
The idea is to duplicate the molecular “lock-on” tes uses. This is quite similar to an immune response, where defending cells trap diseases by attaching themselves to the attackers and neutralizing their dangerous molecular weapons.
At this stage the researchers are hoping to assist natural tes in fighting “cell crawling”.
It may well be that the tes protein could operate as a fire brigade, too, shutting down the scattergun spread caused by marauding cells. The tes protein method could be an instant treatment for any new detected growth.
That would drastically change the treatment cycle. Usually it’s a wait and see situation, to ensure patients who have been cleared stay clear. It may be possible for patients to just get a supply of tes after treatment, or this molecular agent, and ensure that any surviving cancer cells are neutralized, or at least pinned down and unable to migrate elsewhere in the body.
It’s even possible this could be a systemic effect, immobilizing the disease, which would make it far less dangerous and much less able to cause serious damage.
Other possibilities include stimulating the natural production of tes, synthesizing it, cloning it, or some other methods of mass production of the molecular agent.
(That can literally be done in a Petrie dish, by the ton. Ironically, these days producing things like proteins isn't the problem, it's knowing what to produce.)
The relative level of difficulty in treatment goes down a lot, too. If they know how much mena there is, they know how much tes would be required to stop it. From that point it’s a matter of dosage calibration.
If so, that would improve recovery rates by literal multiples. A friend of my mother’s had recurrent problems. Every time she beat it, it would run away to another area. That went on for at least 30 years. It’s not an uncommon story, either, and it’s the curse of the science, as well as sufferers and their families, at this stage.
This finding could be the end of that terrible doubt.
Even better, this could be a step to something more than a cure: Prevention. The spread is what makes it dangerous. Stop that, and it’s dead in the water.
More about Cancer, Spread, Prevention
Latest News
Top News