Breast cancer affects hundreds of thousands of women all over the globe each year, and researchers have been trying their best to find a cure for many years now. Well, if the latest news is anything to go by, we might just be one step closer.
A ‘ground-breaking’ new study has revealed how researchers have found a new way to prevent breast cancer cells from growing and spreading around the body.
The finding revolves around a protein called lysyl oxidase (also known as LOX), which was previously found to drive and spread the growth of cancerous cells.
A team of researchers from The Institute of Cancer Research in London, and the Cancer Research UK Manchester Institute have now discovered a prototype drug that can control and slow down LOX.
As part of their research, the team removed the LOX gene from mice with breast cancer. Incredibly, they found that, in the aftermath, these mice experienced a reduction in the size of their tumours and a slowing in the spread of the disease.
What’s more, these mice suffered no side-effects from the treatment and even survived for longer.
It’s little wonder, then, that experts from the medical field have branded the latest discovery as extremely ‘exciting’. In fact, many believe that the findings could not only help with a cure for this particular branch of the disease, but also cancer of the bowel, prostrate, pancreas and lungs.
Explaining the findings, joint author of the study, Professor Carline Springer, said: “We already knew that LOX had a role in cancer’s spread around the body, but to discover how it also appears to drive the growth of breast cancer cells is a real game-changer.
“It means that drugs that disrupt LOX’s ability to promote growth signals might be able to slow or block cancer progression in patients – as we saw in mice.”
The next step is to carry out clinical trials using the drug. We’re sure we will be hearing a lot more about the progress of this research, and we will keep you updated.