Home Politics Religion Media Biz Society Tech Travel Books Intl. Autos Automobiles
                        Aviation   Pharma   About Us   Feedback   Links

BREAST CANCER AND ALCOHOL

Alcohol increases breast cancer risk, says a new study

BY OUR PHARMA CORRESPONDENT


May 5, 2007: It has been known for long that consumption of alcohol is a risk factor for breast cancer. However, the exact reason for this has remained obscure.

A new study using a mouse model has now shed some light on the why and how of the disease.

Alcohol increased the production of a growth factor known as vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in tumour cells. The increased levels of VEGF hastened the formation of new blood vessels in a process known as angiogenesis, which allows tumours to grow and metastasise.

VEGF, incidentally, is needed for the formation of new blood vessels.

The study has concluded that moderate consumption of alcohol stimulates the growth and progression of breast cancer by fuelling the development of new blood vessels, which is compulsory for the growth of cancer cells. In short, VEGF can promote the formation of new blood vessels, and this suggests that alcohol can induce tumour angiogenesis.

The scientists who conducted the study suggest the difference in the weight of tumour is the result of heightened growth in blood vessels owing to alcohol consumption.

This happens because when a rodent, or a human, drinks alcohol, the cells in their bodies go into overdrive to get rid of the ‘toxins.’ The stressed-out cells then send out the hormone VEGF that stimulates the growth of blood vessels.

The study is the first of its kind to use an animal model that accurately mimics breast cancer. In the previous studies, human breast-cancer cells were injected into ‘nude’ mice, or those mice lacking an immune system. Without a line of defence, the mice’s bodies would let the foreign cells grow and scientists could run experiments on them.

There have also been many studies, which used toxic levels of alcohol, leading to results that were less applicable to humans who consumed lesser quantities of alcohol.

The researchers conclude that their results, unlike the results of previous studies, can be directly translated to humans and have implications both in preventing and helping treat breast cancer.

Normal people produce cancer cells every day, according to a researcher. But, at the beginning, the cancer does not have blood vessels. This makes it easier for the body’s immune system to fend them off. However, once the cancerous cells acquire a blood-vessel lifeline, which the new study suggests is triggered by alcohol, the tumour growth succeeds.
 

BY OUR PHARMA CORRESPONDENT

 

 

Auto news for auto freaks! iDrive.in
DWS community! / Cricket blog

 

Latest Stories in Pharma

 

Cleanliness campaign for 2008 Olympics launched in China

Married people live longer than singles, says a new research

Cavities in baby teeth, among children, on the rise in US

Pak aims to be pharma hub

Gene that causes heart disease found

Drug approval process to get shorter in Japan

Celesentri or Maraviroc, new HIV drug, to get FDA approval

Alcohol increases breast cancer risk

Play therapy help kids hit by trauma

Diet can help women boost low libido

WHO launches campaign against medical errors

 

Pharma archive: 7 Jan 2007

Pharma archive: 14 Sep, 2005

 

 

 

Home Politics Religion Media Biz Society Tech Travel Books Intl. Autos Automobiles
                        Aviation   Pharma   About Us   Feedback   Links

Latest updates    Contact Us - Feedback    About Us