Blocking chemical messenger in immune cells 'could inhibit cancer spread'

10 December 2015

The spread of cancer could be inhibited if a chemical messenger in immune cells is blocked, new research has revealed.

A study by Francis Crick Institute found that neutrophils, neutrophils "swing into action" whenever the body suffers an injury or infection.

However, this can be counterproductive in cancer patients and actually aid the spread of the disease, as well as boost the likelihood of secondary tumours taking hold.

As a result, the institute believes its findings could open the door to a potential new cancer treatment.

Study leader Dr Ilaria Malanchi commented: "Our work suggests a way of targeting the messengers and stopping them from aiding cancer spread. Now further research is needed to see if this approach could help cancer patients."

Nell Barrie of Cancer Research UK, which funded the research, added that the findings provide "another important piece of the cancer puzzle".

 

Posted by Edward Bartel

 

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