A new study on combating mesothelioma suggests that the component curcumin, found in the popular turmeric spice, may help fight mesothelioma by increasing protein inhibitors that can slow down the cancer.
Conducted by experts and doctors at Ohio’s Case Comprehensive Care Center and Germany’s Georg-Speyer-Haus Institute for Biomedical Research, the study focused on a protein known as STAT3, which is known to trigger and promote the growth of cancers. When victims have a lower level a PIAS3, an enzyme that fights STAT3, they have an increased chance of dying from mesothelioma. However, when curcumin was administered to patients, their PIAS3 increased, thus fighting off the protein that increases cancer. In addition, when curcumin was administered along with peptides that were extracted from PIAS3, mesothelioma cells began to die off.
“Our findings suggest that PIAS3 expression positively affects survival in mesothelioma patients and that PIAS3 activation could become a therapeutic strategy. Our interest for the future is that we want to find better, more simple ways to increase intracellular levels of PIAS3 for malignant mesothelioma through the use of synthetic PIAS3 peptide or curcumin analogs,” said Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine’s Dr. Afshin Dowlati.
However, Dowlati states that analogs must be used, as people who eat turmeric spice do not successfully absorb the curcumin into their system.
Curcumin was used previously this year as well. Researchers from Turkey applied the component with an analog during a mesothelioma patient’s lung transplant operation. The results showed that it helped protect the patient’s cells during chemotherapy sessions.
Mesothelioma Rates Continue to Rise
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Curcumin, cancer-inhibiting peptides show promise in slowing progression of mesothelioma, September 18, 2014, Case Western Research University School of Medicine, News Release