Hope For Cancer Suffers?

Hope For Cancer Suffers?

The venom peptide MP1 selectively kills human cancer cells!

Most people tend to stay away from wasps because these insects can sting, causing a painful, burning and itchy sensation on the skin. In that case none would welcome a sting from the Brazilian wasp Polybia paulista.

However this particular wasp's venom does contain a potentially useful molecule. A new study from a team of researchers at the University of Brazil has found that a toxin contained within the sting of a wasp kills cancer cells without harming any of the healthy ones.

The toxin, called MP1, was found to be able to interact with fat molecules on the surface of cancer cells, boring holes that allow molecules crucial for cell function to leak out. Wasps normally use the MP1 toxin to attack prey or defend itself against predators.

The explanation suggests a possible new cellular structure to target when designing cancer drugs.

“Cancer therapies that attack the lipid composition of the cell membrane would be an entirely new class of anticancer drugs. This could be useful in developing new combination therapies, where multiple drugs are used simultaneously to treat a cancer by attacking different parts of the cancer cells at the same time,” Paul Beales, co-author of the study said.

Another researcher on the team, João Ruggiero Neto from São Paulo State University further explained the process, saying that “Formed in only seconds, these large pores are big enough to allow critical molecules such as RNA and proteins to easily escape cells. The dramatic enhancement of the permeabilization induced by the peptide in the presence of PE and the dimensions of the pores in these membranes was surprising.”

“Understanding the mechanism of action of this peptide will help in translational studies to further assess the potential for this peptide to be used in medicine. As it has been shown to be selective to cancer cells and non-toxic to normal cells in the lab, this peptide has the potential to be safe, but further work would be required to prove that,” Beales added.

Nature is full of medicine, and with a staggering 50 percent of us likely to receive a cancer diagnosis within our lifetimes, it’s time to start paying more attention to the healing potential of the natural world. I really hope and pray this will be the first step to a medicine that will eventually cure cancer!

Source: True Activist

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