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Turmeric is known for a wide range of benefits, one of the most promising being it’s potential uses in the prevention and treatment of cancer. A new study published in the journal Cancer Letters has taken a new look at the active anti-cancer component in turmeric—curcumin—and found that it can strike at the ‘root cause’ of cancerous tumor formation.The conventional school of thought has always assumed cancer cells self-renew, that the cells within a tumor are sort of equals. Another school of thought, and one that is gaining more traction, is the one that looks at cells known as cancer stem cells (CSC) and proposes that these sort of “mother” cells are at the top of cancer cell hierarchy and drive the growth of tumors.
Using the conventional model of cancer and treating tumors with surgery, chemo, and radiation, we may be able to “debulk” a tumor, but the stem cells may remain behind. When this happens, not only does the tumor eventually come back, but it does so with a vengeance, being treatment-resistant and often resulting as death.
A new turmeric study published in Cancer Letters is paving the way for a revolution in the way that we both understand and treat cancer. Titled, “Targeting cancer stem cells by curcumin and clinical applications,” U.S. researchers evaluated the primary polyphenol in the Indian spice known as curcumin for its ability to target cancer stem cells (CSCs), which are believed to be at the root cause of tumor formation and malignancy.
Whereas conventional models of cancer assumed that the majority of the cancer cells within a tumor possess self-renewal capacity to differing degrees, the CSC model proposes that, “[T]he initiation, maintenance, and growth of a tumor is driven by a minor population of cancer cells termed cancer stem cells (CSCs),” and that “These CSCs undergo continuous self-renewal and differentiate to heterogeneous cancer cells, yielding new tumors recapitulating the parental tumors, while the majority of cancer cells lack …
This topic is quite interesting, because it may show that some forms of pseudosciences may work. It is known to me that Turmeric is used by many as a Homeopathic medicine. Even though many don't know how the spice works they knew it had healing properties. Could this be the advent of a new age where instead of the use of strong antibiotics, people look to older treatments. Personally I fell that this will help create more advanced medicines to help with Mesothelioma and further cancer research.
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