Special nutrition causes cancer cells to starve – medical practice

Dietary changes can improve cancer treatment

Conversion to special nutritionin which there is a record of protein is drastically reduced, according to a recent study it can contribute to cancer cells die and eventual resistors overcome during treatment.

researchers from Rogel Oncology Center and University of Michigan (USA) in a current research project demonstrated that a Switching to a low-protein diet improve the standard of care for colorectal cancer. The results of the study were recently presented in the journal “Gastroenterology”.

No growth without nutrients

Cancer cells need certain nutrients to survive, grow and multiply. According to the American working group, the so-called molecule mTORC1 essential role in nutrient recognition.

mTORC1 is a master regulator of cell growth

mTORC1 is therefore often referred to as The main regulator of cell growth designated. The molecule allows cells to recognize different nutrients and thereby create the appropriate nutrients growth incentives and given to multiply.

However, when certain nutrients are limited or absent, cells turn off mTORC1, which also limits cell growth and proliferation.

In colon cancer cells, mTORC1 is hyperactive

Previous research has shown that mTORC1 in colorectal cancer cells hyperactive Yippee. This led to the hypothesis that colon tumors misuse signaling pathways to recognize nutrients, and so on grow faster.

starve cancer cells

“In colon cancer, if you reduce the nutrients available to the tumors, the cells don’t know what to do.”explains the first author of the study Professor Dr. Yatrik M. Shah.

According to him, without the nutrients needed for growth, cancer cells experience a kind of crisis that eventually leads to cell death leads Cancer cells are literally starving.

In mice with colon cancer, the researchers were able to demonstrate that a low protein diet it blocks the very nutrient signaling pathway used by colon cancer cells.

So far, mTORC1 cannot be inhibited by drugs

Already from the standard treatment of colorectal cancer, mTORC1 is known to have other mutation forms, which can lead to cancer cells becoming resistant to treatment resistant will. According to the study, this process could be slowed down by a low-protein diet.

Attempts have already been made to block mTORC1 with an active substance. However, the tested substances caused significant side effects and the effect ended once the drugs were discontinued. A low-protein diet appears to be an alternative and a more natural way to turn off mTORC.

Not suitable as sole therapy

“Low protein diet is not the only treatment”have a student car Dr. Sumeet Solanki out. Diet must in combination with other measures. Because giving up protein isn’t entirely risk-free. They often suffer from cancer anyway muscle weakness and weight loss. A low-protein diet could make these symptoms worse.

“Putting cancer patients on a long-term low-protein diet is not ideal”, confirms Shah. For this measure, it is necessary to find the right time window and at the same time supplement it with another treatment method in order to increase its effectiveness.

In further research work, the team now wants to refine this concept so that it can be integrated into therapy. (vb)

Author and source information

This text meets the requirements of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been reviewed by health professionals.


Postgraduate editor (ZF) Volker Blašek


  • Sumeet Solanki, Katherine Sanchez, Varun Ponnusamy et al.: Dysregulated Amino Acid Sensing Drives Colorectal Cancer Growth and Metabolic Reprogramming Leading to Chemoresistance; in: Gastroenterology (2022), gastrojournal.org
  • University of Michigan: Dietary changes starve cancer cells, overcome treatment resistance (veröffentlicht: 18.11.2022), labblog.uofmhealth.org

Important note:
This article contains general advice only and should not be used for self-diagnosis or treatment. It cannot replace a doctor’s visit.

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