Researchers Reveal Cancer's Energy Source In a Computer Model

Kamal Nayan
August 01, 2014 12:24 PM EDT

Researchers, with the help of a computer model, have detailed an energy-creating process vital and unique to cancer cells. 

Researchers believe, the findings could lead to new interventions and personalizations of cancer treatments based on individual needs. 

The study mainly focuses on the energy-making process in cancer cells known as the Warburg Effect. 

According to the study, some of the enzymes previously thought to have no effect on the Warburg Effect, but in fact, play a larger role. Citing an example, the study mentioned that an enzyme called GAPDH influences many parts of cancer cell's energy-making pathway. 

"Our findings open opportunities for new ways to intervene in the Warburg Effect," said Jason Locasale, the paper's senior author and assistant professor of nutritional sciences in Cornell's College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, in the press release.

"The results also provide glimpses into whether we have predictive capacity to discern if treatments might be working." 

Researchers added that new findings are an important step toward developing a drug that affects only fermentation and not the metabolism of glucose, ultimately depriving cancer cells of energy. 

The study has been published in the journal eLife

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