Monday, May 17, 2010

Sugar and cancer - more studies

I've had material on here before about the relationship between sugar and cancer. Cancer cells apparently rely on sugar to survive, so remove the sugar and you starve the cells. There have been experiments using ketogenic diets to treat cancer and other approaches using drugs to intervene down similar pathways.

I saw this in the New Scientist yesterday: Cancer's sweet tooth becomes a target

It is intersesting stuff.

Most of these efforts stem from an observation dating back to the 1930s - that cancer cells generate energy via glycolysis. This is different to the way cells normally make energy, through aerobic respiration in specialised chambers called mitochondria. Ordinary cells do use glycolysis but only if they are short of oxygen, as it is hugely inefficient, gobbling up large amounts of glucose for very little energy .

The focus is all on drugs though rather than diet


Chris D said...

Cancer cells don't rely on sugar to survive, that's a poor oversimplification of old research.

The by-products of glycolysis have some adaptive advantages for tumors, including angiogensis.

pieter d said...


In case you didn't see this already:

interesting, especially with your ancestral glasses on.