Photo by Sarah
Neither in breaking television news nor on the front pages of newspapers has an important cancer discovery been discussed. The media seem to be interested in everything but the recently released research results from the University of Alberta. Despite their ignorance, there is good reason to take a look at the study. It shows that Canadian researchers have probably found a cure for cancer, using one of the most basic drugs.
The drug has long been used for the treatment of metabolic disorders, and its potential for use in cancer treatment was discovered by chance. Its name is dichloroacetate. Since the drug is already in circulation, doctors may not be concerned about long-term or side effects of its cancer treatment.
Not only is the drug safe, but it’s cheap and widely accessible as well. It doesn’t require a patent, so any pharmaceutical company can develop it. This would cause the drug’s cost to decline.
Scientists at the University of Alberta tested the drug on human cells. The results were astonishing. Dichloroacetate (DCA) managed to kill lung, brain, and breast cancer cells, leaving healthy cells alone and unharmed.
The human body contains natural cancer fighting cells called mitochondria. These cells are usually inactive and, in order to trigger their fight with cancer, scientists inject DCA into the damaged area. Unlike cancer cells, mitochondria contain a self-destruct mechanism that allows them to destroy themselves once they destroy cancer cells, leaving no danger behind.
Since the method cannot be patented, pharmaceutical companies refuse to invest in DCA research, because they wouldn’t profit. Universities and independent laboratories are left to start the new fight against cancer on their own.