What do rotten eggs and colon cancer have in common?

American scientists have found that a fetid smell of hydrogen sulfide is emitted not only from spoiled eggs, but also from colon cancer. Is this fact of practical importance?

The research that reached these results was conducted at Texas State University /USA/.

Scientists have found that colon cancer cells produce large amounts of hydrogen sulfide. Furthermore, this compound appears to be essential for the growth and even survival of the malignant entity.

“Cancer cells love hydrogen sulfide and need it,” notes Csaba Szabo, a professor at the University of Texas and author of the study. The data obtained by the scientists show that malignant cells use this substance to produce energy, to reproduce and to penetrate the tissues of the body.

Scientists believe that a certain protein called CBS, which is present in very large amounts in tumor cells compared to normal, takes part in the formation of hydrogen sulfide. Experiments have shown that chemically blocking this protein results in a significant slowing of tumor growth, while cell growth in healthy tissues remains unchanged.

“In this way, we have discovered a new potential target for anticancer drugs, and by blocking the CBS protein we can effectively fight the malignancy. ” – points out Mark Hellman, one of the professors participating in the research group.

Similar results were obtained in tests on naked mice. The animals were previously implanted with colon cancer cells.

It was found that without hydrogen sulfide, the tumor grew at a much slower rate. In addition, there was also a slowdown in the intensity of angiogenesis – the process in which new blood vessels are formed and which causes the growth of malignant tissue. This is because the newly formed blood vessels provide the cancer cells with oxygen and nutrients.

The discovery has amazed American scientists and they note that if a deeper analysis of this fact is made, its logic and common sense will be identified.

“Billions of years ago, there was no oxygen on Earth and hydrogen sulfide was the fuel that sustained life. That is why the formation of this type of gas by tumor cells can be seen as the resurrection of an ancient biochemical mechanism,” notes Chabo Sabo, author of the study.

The discovery made by the scientists provides doctors and pharmaceutical companies with new opportunities to improve therapies for the treatment of malignant diseases.

American scientists are eagerly waiting for the practical implementation of the results of their research. And they hope that in a few years their scientific work will erect an “insurmountable wall” in the path of carcinogenesis in the colon.

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