PROF DOROTHY BEN­NETT

DIREC­TOR OF THE MOLEC­U­LAR AND CLIN­I­CAL SCIENCES RE­SEARCH IN­STI­TUTE, ST GE­ORGE’S, UNIVER­SITY OF LONDON

BBC Earth (Asia) - - Update -

“This re­port com­bines sev­eral clever molec­u­lar de­sign as­pects to im­pair can­cer growth in an­i­mal mod­els. The ideas in­clude: recog­nis­ing the can­cer blood ves­sels rather than ac­tual can­cer cells, since the ves­sels are what a cir­cu­lat­ing mol­e­cule would meet first, rather than hav­ing to get out­side the blood­stream and find the can­cer cells there; and also this is not lim­ited to a sin­gle can­cer type; and trig­ger­ing blood clot­ting to cut off the can­cer’s blood sup­ply.

“This could po­ten­tially have a ther­a­peu­tic ef­fect in adults with can­cer, where gen­er­ally there will not be any newly form­ing blood ves­sels ex­cept within the growing can­cer. It would not pre­sum­ably be spe­cific enough if there were any other growing blood ves­sels present, for ex­am­ple in growing in­fants or in peo­ple with heal­ing wounds.

“It should be noted that the re­port in­volves only cells and mouse mod­els, and only in one kind of can­cer out of four were some an­i­mals ap­par­ently com­pletely cured. In the oth­ers the can­cer growth was only de­layed. It is hard to pre­dict what might hap­pen in hu­man can­cers.”

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