Cancer continues to be one of humanity’s biggest banes. Of course, we know that mortality is limited, but there are many things we can do to extend our life. Unfortunately, cancer is something that we cannot necessarily prevent or avoid: it can appear in the body with no symptoms and even without any reason to suspect it all. For decades our treatment of depression has always been after-the-fact, and with very dangerous and toxic drugs whose success rate is often countered by their drastic side effects.
That is, if these drugs work at all. In fact, more than 90 percent of all new anti-cancer drugs fail phase III testing in clinical trials. That largely because
But new research might give us some hope: not just for present cancer patients, but for anyone trying to reduce overall risk.
You see, most drugs are designed to target “bulk” cancer cells. The only problem is that the majority of cancer cells are not associated with the root cause of cancer in the body. This would be the cancer stem cell; these are the tumor-initiating cells, which also happen to be the only cells that can make a new tumor.
Our latest efforts attempt to specifically target and eradicate those stem cells but we do not have enough clarity on which target for the medication to seek out. And today, researchers are saying that they may have found this source, a “cell of origin” that can be targeted.
This research in particular looked at cancer cells taken from a human breast cancer tumor. Observing these stem cells—which only represent about 0.2 percent of the cancer population—scientists say they have found unique traits. Effectively, these cells generate massive amounts of energy in order to replicate rapidly.
It is this initial energy that scientists now believe where they will find the cell of origin. This is where that unmistakable cancer trait—uncontrolled cell multiplication—that causes tumors to form comes from. We also know that cancer stem cells undergo a growth without any tissue attachment, which is what causes the metastasis that cancer drugs target.