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Thread: Antioxidants may make cancers worse.

  1. #1 Antioxidants may make cancers worse. 
    Forum Radioactive Isotope skeptic's Avatar
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    How antioxidants can accelerate cancers, and why they don't protect against them -- ScienceDaily

    Removing oxidisng agents from cancer cells may make the cancer grow faster. Oxidants may work against cancers, and consuming lots of antioxidants may make the cancer grow faster. There is clear evidence that extra beta carotene in smokers actually increases their chances of getting lung cancer. This principle looks to hold for other cancers also.


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  3. #2  
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    Yeah. The evidence is accumulating on that. Didn't I read the stuff about smokers and beta-carotene a few years ago?


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  4. #3  
    Forum Freshman Oliya's Avatar
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    this is a great and thought provoking post. Thank you! It does make sense, since cancer hates oxygen, to rid of it by taking in large amounts of anti-oxidants logically would do more harm than good.
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  5. #4  
    Forum Freshman Oliya's Avatar
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    also, do you know who funded this research? If it was a pharmaceutical company, I would probably think twice about it.
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  6. #5  
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    The research was done by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in NY. They are a private, non profit, research and teaching organisation. Their funding is mostly from the federal government and from private gifts. Only 5% is from corporate sources. I doubt they would be prone to influence by Big Pharma
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  7. #6  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oliya View Post
    this is a great and thought provoking post. Thank you! It does make sense, since cancer hates oxygen, to rid of it by taking in large amounts of anti-oxidants logically would do more harm than good.
    On what basis do you say cancer hates oxygen? Do cancer cells not respire in the same way as non-cancerous cells? They are not anaerobic, to my knowledge.

    (P.S. I wonder why your choice of avatar makes me think there's a sporting chance that you are talking out of your arse.)
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  8. #7  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope Paleoichneum's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Oliya View Post
    this is a great and thought provoking post. Thank you! It does make sense, since cancer hates oxygen, to rid of it by taking in large amounts of anti-oxidants logically would do more harm than good.
    On what basis do you say cancer hates oxygen? Do cancer cells not respire in the same way as non-cancerous cells? They are not anaerobic, to my knowledge.

    (P.S.
    Might I suggest not biting the new members.....
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  9. #8  
    ▼▼ dn ʎɐʍ sıɥʇ ▼▼ RedPanda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Oliya View Post
    (P.S. I wonder why your choice of avatar...
    It's a photo of a woman called 'Oliya'.

    I hope you aren't going down the anti-blonde road.
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  10. #9  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paleoichneum View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Oliya View Post
    this is a great and thought provoking post. Thank you! It does make sense, since cancer hates oxygen, to rid of it by taking in large amounts of anti-oxidants logically would do more harm than good.
    On what basis do you say cancer hates oxygen? Do cancer cells not respire in the same way as non-cancerous cells? They are not anaerobic, to my knowledge.

    (P.S.
    Might I suggest not biting the new members.....
    Yes, quite right.

    Oliya, I apologise. I was in an uncharacteristically misanthropic mood last night (and we have cancer in the family which makes me a bit touchy about it, I suppose, but no excuse really.)
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  11. #10 anaerobic metabolism in solid tumor cancers 
    Forum Freshman DogLady's Avatar
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    Actually, most cancers (solid tumors, at least) do have significant areas of anaerobic metabolism.

    "Expert Rev Anticancer Ther. 2013 Oct;13(10):1229-42. doi: 10.1586/14737140.2013.843455. Epub 2013 Oct 7.
    The influence of pH and hypoxia on tumor metastasis.
    Abaza M1, Luqmani YA.
    Abstract

    Rapid malignant proliferation, prior to effective tumor neoangiogenesis, creates a microenvironment around solid cancers, which is predominantly hypoxic and characterized by a high interstitial fluid pressure. Presumably as an adaptive response, tumor cells favor metabolic activity with apparently inefficient energy output, and production of intermediates that promote cellular replication, preferentially through anaerobic glycolysis, a phenomenon that persists even in re-established normoxic conditions (anomalously referred to as 'aerobic glycolysis'). "

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  12. #11  
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    Cancer cells depend on the nutritional resources shared by healthy cells.
    So if we try to kill cancer cells, we hope that they are weaker than the healthy ones and die off at a much higher rate.
    On the other hand some cancerous growths are accelerated by extra available nutrients, such a antioxidants. This does not necessarily mean that antioxidants are cancer causing.
    In the same way we don't stop using toxins to target cancer cells, even though other healthy cells are at risk.
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  13. #12  
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    Actually, the reason we can get away with using toxins against cancer cells is that they grow faster, and take up toxins faster, and are hence more vulnerable to toxins than normal cells. It is this fast growth that means excess nutrients may also maintain cancer cell growth, at the expense of the cancer patient.
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