Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New compound may protect against liver cancer

16.02.2006


Researchers have identified a new compound called CDDO-Im that protects against the development of liver cancer in laboratory animals. The compound appears to stimulate the enzymes that remove toxic substances from the cells, thereby increasing the cells’ resistance to cancer-causing toxins. The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the National Cancer Institute, agencies of the federal National Institutes of Health, provided funding to researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health for the two-year study.



The compound’s effectiveness at very low doses suggests it may have similar cancer-fighting properties in humans. Researchers believe it may be particularly effective in preventing cancers with a strong inflammatory component, such as liver, colon, prostate and gastric cancers. The compound could eventually play a preventive role in a wide range of other illnesses such as neurodegenerative disease, asthma and emphysema.

The study results are featured on the cover of the February 15, 2006 issue of the journal Cancer Research.


"The results show that the potency of this compound is more than 100 times as great as that of other chemopreventive agents in protecting against cancer," said NIEHS Director David A. Schwartz, M.D. "This protective effect, combined with the compound’s anti-inflammatory properties, make it an exciting avenue for the prevention of other diseases as well."

CDDO-Im belongs to a class of cancer-fighting compounds called triterpenoids. It is a synthetic compound derived from oleanolic acid, a naturally occurring substance found in plants all over the world. Research with other oleanolic derivatives showed marked anti-tumor activity in both animals and humans.

To test the effectiveness of CDDO-Im, researchers treated laboratory rats with either 0.1, 0.3, 1.0, 3.0 or 10 micromole doses of the compound. Two days after treatment with CDDO-Im, the rats were treated with aflatoxin, a naturally occurring toxin that causes liver cancer in animals.

Evaluation of the rat livers showed that the lowest concentration of CDDO-Im led to an 85 percent reduction in pre-cancerous lesions, abnormal growths that have a greater likelihood of developing into actual cancers. "This compound has a much greater effect at a far lower dose than any other compound currently used for preventing aflatoxin-induced cancer in humans," said Thomas Kensler, Ph.D., a cancer biologist with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and lead author on the study.

According to Kensler, CDDO-Im activates a protein called Nrf2 that plays a central role in protecting the cells against the toxic effects of environmental agents. "Nrf2 directs certain genes to stimulate the cell’s defense mechanisms," he said. "The protein also stimulates key enzymes that can detoxify harmful agents like aflatoxin and remove them from the cell."

Like other compounds derived from oleanolic acid, CDDO-Im also has strong anti-inflammatory properties that make it ideally suited to the prevention of certain cancers. "When cells become inflamed, they can produce reactive molecules called free radicals that can damage DNA and promote cancer development," said Kensler. "CDDO-Im can also inhibit cancer formation by interfering with this inflammatory process."

Because it can stimulate the body’s cancer-fighting capabilities at such low doses, Kensler believes that CDDO-Im is an excellent candidate for cancer prevention use in humans. "If this compound can produce such a potent and dramatic reduction in the number of pre-cancerous growths, it should have an equally dramatic impact on the development of actual cancers," he said.

In addition to serving as a valuable tool in the development of new cancer prevention interventions, CDDO-Im may offer protection in a wide range of other disease settings. "We know that the Nrf2 protein plays a role in regulating many different kinds of genes involved in protecting the cell from harmful agents," said Kensler. "It follows that activation of the Nrf2 pathway with CDDO-Im could provide protection against a number of diseases where environmental agents play important roles in their causes."

John Peterson | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.niehs.nih.gov
http://www.niehs.nih.gov/home.htm.

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Study suggests possible new target for treating and preventing Alzheimer's
02.12.2016 | Oregon Health & Science University

nachricht The first analysis of Ewing's sarcoma methyloma opens doors to new treatments
01.12.2016 | IDIBELL-Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

Im Focus: Molecules change shape when wet

Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water

In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...

Im Focus: Fraunhofer ISE Develops Highly Compact, High Frequency DC/DC Converter for Aviation

The efficiency of power electronic systems is not solely dependent on electrical efficiency but also on weight, for example, in mobile systems. When the weight of relevant components and devices in airplanes, for instance, is reduced, fuel savings can be achieved and correspondingly greenhouse gas emissions decreased. New materials and components based on gallium nitride (GaN) can help to reduce weight and increase the efficiency. With these new materials, power electronic switches can be operated at higher switching frequency, resulting in higher power density and lower material costs.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE together with partners have investigated how these materials can be used to make power...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

UTSA study describes new minimally invasive device to treat cancer and other illnesses

02.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

Plasma-zapping process could yield trans fat-free soybean oil product

02.12.2016 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

What do Netflix, Google and planetary systems have in common?

02.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>