Can diet help cancer treatment?

  • Thursday 01, August 2019 02:37 PM
  • Can diet help cancer treatment?
Sharjah24 – AFP: Diet is already a key part of managing diseases like diabetes and hypertension, but new research adds to a growing body of evidence that it could help cancer treatment too.
The study, published Thursday in the journal Nature, found restricting intake of an amino acid found in red meat and eggs significantly enhanced cancer treatment in mice, slowing tumour growth.

"These are very strong effects, and they are effects that are as strong as we would see with drugs that work," said lead researcher Jason Locasale, an associate professor at Duke University's School of Medicine.

"What this study is showing is that there are many situations where a drug by itself doesn't work, but if you combine the drug with the diet, it works. Or the radiation therapy doesn't work well, but if you combine... with the diet, it works well," said.

The study focused on restricting intake of the amino acid methionine, which is key to a process called one-carbon metabolism that helps cancer cells grow.

Methionine restriction has already been associated with both anti-aging and weight loss, but its importance to cancerous cells suggested it could also be a promising way to enhance cancer treatment.