In perhaps one of biggest mistakes in recent medical history, a team of researchers discovered that a gene thought to suppress cancer actually promotes colorectal cancer.
- The study was published in the cancer research journal Oncogene
- The Sprouty2 gene actually protects against several other types of cancer
- The study lasted for over three years, and it focused on mouse models, human biopsy samples, and cancer cell models
- Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer found in American men and women
- According to the American Cancer Society, there is a 1 20 chance of developing colorectal cancer
The gene, Sprouty2, is widely known to suppress the metastasis and the growth of a large number of cancers, especially in breast, prostate, and even liver cancer.
However, when applied to a patient with colorectal cancer, the medicine does exactly the opposite, promoting the metastasis and cell growth of the cancer.
The research was led by Ph. D. Sharad Khare, associate professor of research from the University Of Missouri School Of Medicine’s Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, and lasted for over three years.
The team spent three years analyzing mouse models, human biopsy samples, and cancer cell models, and eventually found that the Sprouty2 gene only acts in a negative manner when in contact with colorectal cancer. All other types of cancer studied so far seem to be either suppressed or unaffected.
The Sprouty2 gene works by blocking molecular circuits in order to prevent the cancer cells from eventually growing and spreading to other parts of the body – metastasizing.
The problem is that for colorectal cancer, the gene acts in the opposite manner, actually increasing the metastasis ability of the cancer cells, instead of doing the opposite.
Unfortunately, the team still has no idea as to why the gene acts differently for a single type of cancer, but they assume it has something to do with the gene being up-regulated, or supercharged.
Despite this fact, the team still feels confident in their results, hoping to soon understand what is behind this most eerie process, and to eventually come up with specific, personalized cancer treatments, that would target each necessary gene in particular.
Regardless of future results and of the discovery’s potential, the reality is that a large number of people most likely died because of improper treatment.
Since the treatment using the Sprouty2 gene was considered so effective, it’s almost a certainty that people suffering from colorectal cancer used it and ended up paying with their lives for someone else’s mistake.
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