Antioxidants, often credited with an ability to protect cells from the damage that makes them turn cancerous, may actually help cancerous cells survive, says linkurl:a study; published online in Nature today (August 19).
Multiplying tumor cells
Image: Wikipedia
"The study was certainly intriguing, but how generally applicable the results are remains to be seen," linkurl:Harold Seifried; of the Division of Cancer Prevention at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Md., who was not involved in the study, told The Scientist. Healthy mammary epithelial cells undergo programmed cell death when they stray from their normal cellular environment. Tumor cells, however, receive survival signals from oncogenes, which keep the cells alive when they migrate to different parts of the body. linkurl:Joan Brugge; at Harvard University and her colleagues hypothesized that oncogenes support tumor cells by blocking apoptosis, but when they prevented apoptosis in cell culture, cells still died when they were...

Interested in reading more?

Become a Member of

Receive full access to more than 35 years of archives, as well as TS Digest, digital editions of The Scientist, feature stories, and much more!
Already a member?