A Promising treatment that can target cancer cells

Gabriel Stephens


Radiation and chemotherapy are the most common and effective methods of treating cancer. There is a problem with these treatments however as they can have severe side effects because they can damage other types of cells and not just cancer ones. This paper looks at treatments that can target cancer cells specifically while leaving normal cells alone. There are many possible ways to do this because cancer cells have differences to normal cells.  One way this is done is by targeting the different metabolism of cancer cells. For example, unlike normal cells, cancer cells get most of their energy from glycolysis so that would be a good target. One promising drug that can do this is known as Dichloroacetate (DCA). One study in this article has shown that DCA can switch the metabolism of cancer cells from glycolysis to mitochondrial respiration which causes these cells to undergo apoptosis while leaving normal cells unharmed. Another promising part of DCA is that it has been used in humans with brain cancer and no toxicity has been observed. More trials and testing need to be done however and the amount of DCA you can give a patient might vary due to the genetics of the patient.

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