Maintaining proper oxygen supply in tumors could be key factor to stop progression of cancer

Plazma Inferno!

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The lack of oxygen in tumor cells changes the cells’ gene expression, thereby contributing to the growth of cancer. This is the main conclusion of a research project led by professor Diether Lambrechts and Dr. Bernard Thienpont (VIB-KU Leuven), which was published in the renowned scientific journal Nature. The findings are far-reaching, as the study also proved that maintaining a proper oxygen supply in tumors inhibits these so-called ‘epigenetic aberrations’. The paper’s insights could eventually lead to new anti-cancer drugs that target blood vessels or the epigenetic aberrations.
Uncovering the link between oxygen shortage and tumor growth was the result of the analysis of over 3,000 patient tumors. As a next step, the researchers verified another assumption: would interfering with tumor oxygen supply strike a blow against the progression of cancer? They were pleased to see this hypothesis confirmed: using mice, they proved that normalizing the blood supply is sufficient to stop the epigenetic alterations from occurring.