A group of scientists at the University of California, USA, identified a mechanism by which cancer cells absorb glucose and attract energy to survive and grow tumors.
At the same time, certain molecular contents make it possible to detect precancerous conditions that cause cells to grow, writes the online edition of MedicalXpress.
Experts have found that the proteins used in the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus play an important role in the formation of new tumor formations. According to their data, sodium-glucose co-transporter 2 (SGLT2), which is responsible for the transfer of glucose into cells, is one of the main suppliers of "food" for cancer cells.
Cancer cells need glucose to survive and grow. Therefore, they need a lot of transport proteins, glucose transporters.
Previous research has shown that SGLT2 can play a major role in the development of several types of cancer, including pancreatic and prostate cancer.
Using positron emission tomography, researchers have determined the activity of various glucose transporters in cancer cells at various stages of their development. So they found that these cells contain large amounts of SGLT2. According to scientists, this shows that newly emerging tumors provide carbohydrates mainly through SGLT2 and not through glucose transporters.
By reviewing their data, the researchers also found that an increase in SGLT2 can occur before the tumor develops, making this specific protein a marker for early detection of disease.
The discovery of American scientists can have an impact on early cancer prevention methods.