Danish Research Shows Cannibalism In Cancer Cells

The researchers at the University of Copenhagen have recently found out that Cancer cells repair fatal damages by consuming their own kinds. In both Cancer cells and normal cells, the interiors being fluid, damage in the membrane can be fatal to the cell. In a recently published report, a team of Danish researchers has shown that a process, otherwise known as macropinocytosis, helps the cancer cells to repair the damage.

According to the study, damaged cancer cells pull intact cells close to sealing off the damage so that the internal fluid does not leak out of the cell. After this, the cell brings the damaged membrane into the lysosome to break it down into small parts, and thus, the cells stay intact.

The researchers damaged the membrane of a Cancer cell to understand the mechanism of the repair and according to them, if the cells are inhibited from forming the protective layer, they fail to repair themselves and promptly die off. This discovery can open a new horizon in the treatment of the disease. The head of the research Jesper Nylandsted of Danish Cancer Society’s Research Center and the University of Copenhagen said, “Our research provides very basic knowledge about how cancer cells survive. In our experiments, we have also shown that cancer cells die if the process is inhibited, and this points towards macropinocytosis as a target for future treatment. It is a long-term perspective, but it is interesting,”

According to the researchers, the cells can often shed the damaged part to keep the rest of the organism safe. The report says that only aggressive cancer cells can perform this fixing method. While this will open up a new horizon in the treatment of cancer, the doctors are opting for a more thorough understanding of the matter. Co-researcher Stine Lauritzen Sønder said “Our research provides very basic knowledge about how cancer cells survive. In our experiments, we have also shown that cancer cells die if the process is inhibited, and this points towards macropinocytosis as a target for future treatment. It is a long-term perspective, but it is interesting,”

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