A high dosage of vitamin C, equal to 300 oranges, can eliminate tumors with mutations.
Vitamin C can combat colorectal cancer cells and eliminate the growth of tumors with mutations, new research suggests.
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The research was conducted on mice and shows promise for further research in treating human cancer patients.
A team of researchers led by Cornell University found that a high dosage of vitamin C – almost equivalent to 300 oranges – can destroy the growth of KRAS and BRAF mutant colorectal tumors in cultured cells and mice. Humans can also get benefit from it.
“Our findings provide a mechanistic rationale for exploring the therapeutic use of vitamin C to treat colorectal cancers that carry KRAS or BRAF mutations.” Senior author Dr. Lewis Cantley from Weill Cornell Medicine said in a statement.
Vitamin C is widely known for improving health and can easily be obtained from citrus fruits. It contains a chemical compound called ascorbic acid. In an oxygen rich environment, it becomes oxidized and transform into a new compound called dehydroabsorbic acid (DHA).
Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosed and the third leading cause of cancer deaths in United States. Each year, 93,090 new cases are registered and almost half of them are predicated to die of the disease. Most of the times, KRAS and BRAF are the genes responsible for the growth of cancerous cells and cannot be impaired effectively with conventional therapies and chemotherapy. The finding could lead to the development of a new treatment for cancer.
But researchers are still cautious since the study was done on mice under controlled conditions and the results need to be evaluated in the setting of human clinical trial.
“Further study is definitely needed to expand our understanding of these processes,” said lead author Jihye Yun, a postdoctoral fellow in Cantley’s lab. “But now that we know the mechanisms, we can utilize the knowledge wisely to get the desired effects.”
“This is not a therapy that you would want to wander into blindly without knowledge of what is going on in your tumor.”
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Source: Cornell University