Blocking fatty acids slows prostate cancer
Medicine shows that fatty acids fuel prostate tumor growth. As blocking fatty acids seems to slow disease progression, fatty acid uptake may be a promising new therapeutic target for prostate cancer.
Renea Taylor, the deputy director of the Cancer Program at the Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute in Clayton, Australia, and Prof. Matthew Watt, the head of the Physiology Department at the University of Melbourne, also in Australia, led the new research.
As Taylor, Prof. Watt, and their colleagues mention in their paper, even though prostate cancer grows slowly, preventing it from reaching an aggressive stage remains difficult.
The researchers wondered what it is that causes prostate tumors to become so aggressive. They wanted to determine what fuels the tumors and how prostate cancer metabolism differs from that of other cancers
Taylor explains what pointed the researchers in the direction of fatty acids. "There is a strong link between obesity, diet, and poor outcomes in men who develop prostate cancer," she says.
"In particular, those men who consume more saturated fatty acids seem to have more aggressive cancer."
So, the scientists set out to examine more closely the role of fatty acids in prostate tumor growth.