Certain foods may assist spread of breast cancer

Certain foods may assist spread of breast cancer

These include asparagus, seafood, soy, egg, nuts and beef.

Researchers were prompted by these mouse studies to examine data from breast cancer patients.

There has been an earlier study published previous year that showed that the amino acids glycine and serine were important for the development and spread of lymphomas and intestinal cancers.

The research was looking at asparagine, an amino acid found in asparagus and lots of other foods. These data indicated that the greater the ability of breast cancer cells to make asparagine, the more likely the disease is to spread.

In future, the scientists believe that alongside conventional treatments like chemotherapy, breast cancer patients could be given a diet in hospital that restricts asparagine to help stop the disease spreading.

"When the availability of asparagine was reduced, we saw little impact on the primary tumour in the breast, but tumour cells had reduced capacity for metastases in other parts of the body".

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This work relied on the team's expertise in analysing the metabolic processes that take place in cancer cells. If this nutrient is absent, the growth of breast cancer can be slowed, they note.

Greg Hannon, from Cancer Research UK's Cambridge Institute, said that they became interested in asparagine because they had noticed that breast cancer patients with the greatest propensity to...

Baroness Delyth Morgan, chief executive at Breast Cancer Now, said: "This early discovery could offer a long-awaited new way to help stop breast cancer spreading - but we first need to understand the true role of this nutrient in patients".

Diet may impact the spread of some cancers, according to a study published Wednesday by an worldwide team of researchers.

It is this process for which researchers think asparagine is necessary. The animals had triple-negative breast cancer, which grows and spreads faster than other types and is notoriously hard to treat. The next step would involve a clinical trial with cancer patients. Professor Hannon said that their studies show that some cancers are "addicted" to some amino acids or parts of our diets specifically.



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