In addition to its known ability to block an enzyme called cyclooxygenase (COX), aspirin also reduces the formation of blood vessels that fuel developing tumors, it is reported in the current (October) edition of a leading scientific journal.
Without new blood vessels - formed through a process called angiogenesis - tumors cannot grow beyond the size of a pea. With this information, researchers can pursue new lines of investigation that could ultimately yield an entirely new type of cancer-fighting drug.
In the study, Dr Helen Arthur and colleagues at Newcastle University Medical School show that salicylate, an ancient remedy found in plants and closely related to aspirin, also reduces the formation of new blood vessels, an important part of tumor development.
The findings, which appear in the October 2006 issue of The Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB), provides important clues to how aspirin works in cancer and in inflammation.
'Aspirin has always been touted as a wonder drug,' said Gerald Weissmann, MD, Editor-in-Chief of The FASEB Journal, 'and this study shows that we are still learning about the many actions of this amazing drug.'
Dr Arthur said: 'We know from previous studies that low doses of aspirin taken over long periods can reduce the risk of cancer - by as much as 50 per cent in the case of bowel cancer.
'Aspirin seems to work against tumour formation in several ways, one of which is to restrict the blood supply. Tumours attract a blood supply by releasing growth factors that cause nearby blood vessels to grow into the tumour.
'We conducted experiments which involved applying various doses of aspirin to cells, which normally line the inside of blood vessels.
'Our experiments showed that low doses of aspirin had an effect on these cells which tended to cancel out the effect of the growth factors from the tumours.
She added: 'High doses of aspirin are toxic and we would like to stress that anyone suffering from cancer should not take aspirin unless they are advised to do so by a doctor.'
Dr Helen Arthur | alfa
Team discovers how bacteria exploit a chink in the body's armor
20.01.2017 | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Rabies viruses reveal wiring in transparent brains
19.01.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...
Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...
Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.
While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...
Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales
Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...
Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.
As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...
19.01.2017 | Event News
10.01.2017 | Event News
09.01.2017 | Event News
20.01.2017 | Awards Funding
20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences
20.01.2017 | Life Sciences