In recent years, researchers have thought that beta blockers, which are prescribed to many older adults for high blood pressure and heart conditions, might be linked with a decreased risk of cancer. This theory stems from animal and laboratory studies that found that the stress hormone norepinephrine can promote the growth and spread of cancer cells. Beta blockers inhibit norepinephrine's action, so it stands to reason that the medications could have anticancer properties.
Previous studies on beta blockers' effects on colorectal cancer risk have yielded inconsistent results. To provide more thorough information, Michael Hoffmeister, PhD, of the German Cancer Research Center, in Heidelberg, Germany, and his colleagues conducted personal interviews from 2003 to 2007 with 1,762 patients with colorectal cancer and 1,708 cancer-free individuals.
After taking into consideration certain patient characteristics (such as weight and smoking status) and other factors that might influence the results, the researchers found no link between beta blocker use and colorectal cancer risk. Previous studies had not taken these factors into consideration. Even when the investigators broke down their analyses by duration of use of beta blockers, specific types of beta blockers, active ingredients (metoprolol, bisoprolol, carvedilol, and atenolol), and sites within the colon or rectum where colorectal cancer developed, there was no link.
Overall, the results of this study do not support the hypothesis that using beta blockers can lower one's colorectal cancer risk. The findings also point to the importance of considering patient characteristics and other factors that might influence the results of studies that look at how medications affect patients' cancer risk.
Amy Molnar | EurekAlert!
Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung
Scientists reveal source of human heartbeat in 3-D
07.08.2017 | University of Manchester
Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.
As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...
Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.
Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...
For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.
While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...
An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.
The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...
A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...
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