Dichloroacetate (DCA) and brain cancer trial

2015 Research

Phase 1 Clinical Trials have now been completed (https://clinicaltrials.gov/show/NCT01111097) and
Dr Evengelos Michelakis, associate chair and medical researcher at the University of Alberta’s faculty of medicine and his team of researchers are pressing on with their work on the ‘alternative therapy’ DCA.

They bemoan a lack of funding, but then DCA is cheap and no Pharmaceutical company is interested in something that cannot be patented.

Dr Michelakis and his team of researchers were the first to show that a cancer marker called survivin, which was thought to be found only in cancer cells was also heavily expressed in abnormal pulmonary arteries. The work was one of the first comprehensive studies to show a link between pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) and cancer.

For More on DCA click here.

Brain cancer’s go or grow switch

Researchers at the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center-Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute have discovered the switch responsible for the grow-or-go tendency of brain cancer.

Apparently, a molecule, miR-451, orchestrates everything.If there’s no glucose around, this molecule allows a brain tumour to switch to consuming resources (like glutamine) from its own cell.

This would explain why not all patients respond to a Ketogenic or Atkin’s diet. “Our study reveals how brain tumor cells adapt to their surroundings and survive conditions that might fatally starve them of energy,” says co-author Dr. E. Antonio Chiocca, professor and chair of Neurological Surgery at Ohio State. “We have discovered that glioblastoma cells use miR451 to sense the availability of a nutrient – glucose. Levels of miR-451 directly shut down the engine of the tumor cell if there is no glucose or rev it up if there is lots of glucose. This important insight suggests that this molecule might be useful as a biomarker to predict a glioblastoma patient’s prognosis, and that it might be used as a target to develop drugs to fight these tumors.”

The study is published in the March 12 issue of the journal Molecular Cell.


2015 Research
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