Rich, creamy, nutritious and now cancer fighting. New research reveals that molecules derived from avocados could be effective in treating a form of cancer. Researchers have discovered a lipid in avocados that combats acute myeloid leukemia (AML) by targeting the root of the disease - leukemia stem cells. Worldwide, there are few drug treatments available to patients that target leukemia stem cells. The research was published in the journal Cancer Research.
AML is a devastating disease and proves fatal within five years for 90 per cent of seniors over age 65. The new avocado-derived drug could one day significantly increase life expectancy and quality of life for AML patients.
"The stem cell is largely responsible for the disease developing and it's the reason why so many patients with leukemia relapse. We've performed many rounds of testing to determine how this new drug works at a molecular level and confirmed that it targets stem cells selectively, leaving healthy cells unharmed," the researchers said.
They have filed a patent application for the use of the compound, named avocatin B. While the drug is still years away from becoming approved for use in oncology clinics, the researchers are already performing experiments to prepare the drug for a Phase I clinical trial.
Based on material originally posted by University of Waterloo.(Image source)