04.11.2014

Chinese girl discovers cure for cancer found

Yesterday, Tu Youyou became one of three scientists to win this year's Nobel Prize for medicine for her discovery of what has become a standard antimalarial treatment, artemisinin. The backstory behind the 84-year-old Chinese pharmacologist's work is incredible: In 1967, Chairman Mao Zedong set up a secret mission ("Project 523") to find a cure for malaria. After Chinese scientists were initially unable to use synthetic chemicals to treat the mosquito-borne disease, Chairman Mao's government turned to traditional medicine. Tu Youyou, right front, a pharmacologist with the China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, studying traditional Chinese medicine, in the 1950s. The team carried out further tests, only to be baffled when the compound’s powers seemed to melt away. Tu realised that their method of preparation, boiling up the wormwood, might have damaged the active ingredient.
Tu then had to test the treatment in humans — and tried it on herself first to make sure it was safe. For years, Tu's role in unlocking artemisinin was shrouded in secret — until researchers at the National Institutes of Health looked into the drug’s history and realized that Tu deserved credit for her work. In a statement, Tu called artemisinin "a gift for the world’s people from traditional Chinese medicine," and urged researchers to turn to herbs in the search for cures for infectious diseases. Pregnant women often overproduce hormones and other bodily functions while going through pregnancy. Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation(PIH) is hyperpigmentation that occurs after injury to the skin. The reason these skin pigment lesions manifest is because the melanin in our skin becomes overly concentrated in certain areas.
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Scientists headed by Raul Mendez, ICREA research professor at the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona), and Mercedes Fernandez, at IDIBAPS in Barcelona, reveal that the inhibition of CPEB4 protein may prevent the development of the abnormal blood vessels associated with cirrhosis. Cirrhosis is a chronic lesion characterised by the accumulation of scar tissue (fibrous nodules), which alters the normal structure and function of the organ.
The accumulation of scar tissue impedes blood circulation in the liver, thus leading to portal hypertension (the portal vein). VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor) is the main effector protein in the development of blood vessels. In a previous study published in Nature Medicine, Mendez, together with researchers at the Hospital del Mar in Barcelona, had already discovered that CPEB proteins are involved in blood vessel development in pancreatic and brain cancer. The researchers uphold that the repair cycle that the liver enters worsens the situation to the extent that the regeneration nodules, which show high levels of CPEB4, form liver carcinomas. In parallel, Mendez’s lab at IRB Barcelona is working on a research project on CPEB4 inhibitors.


She shared the 2015 prize for medicine with two other scientists who worked on parasitic diseases. But, remarkably, the public had no idea about Tu's lifesaving achievement until just four years ago. Hundreds of communist soldiers, fighting in the mosquito-infested jungles of Vietnam, were falling ill from malaria, and the disease was also killing thousands in southern China.
Tu, a researcher at the Academy of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Beijing, had studied both Chinese and Western medicine, according to a New Scientist profile, and was hand-plucked to search for an herbal cure.
Along with three assistants, she reviewed thousands of traditional Chinese remedies, testing them in mice. Tu reread the recipe, written more than 1600 years ago in a text appositely titled "Emergency Prescriptions Kept Up One’s Sleeve". After enduring no side effects, she organized clinical trials for people with malaria, and the participants were cleared of the disease within little more than a day.
Only in 2011, when she won the prestigious Lasker prize for medical research, did the Chinese Communist Party move to preserve her childhood home. However, they are an unattractive imperfection that can successfully be treated with laser technology.
The small, dark spots can be mainly be found on the hands and face, and can occur on any skin exposed to the sun.
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Given the urgent need to identify new targets for pathological angiogenesis, Mendez and Fernandez started collaborating to examine the role of CPEB4 in this process in the context of cirrhosis, a disease characterised by profound neovascularisation.
The experiments in cells in vitro, in animal models, and in samples taken from patients with cirrhosis have revealed the molecular mechanisms through which the increase in CPEB4 favours the overexpression of VEGF in cirrhosis.
In this context, the Spanish Association against Cancer (Asociacion Espanola Contra el Cancer (AECC)) has awarded more than one million euros to the Mendez-Fernandez tandem, who, together with Jordi Bruix (IDIBAPS-Hospital Clinic), will work in a coordinated manner to unravel the role of this molecule and to propose a treatment for liver carcinomas, the main liver cancer and third cause of death by cancer worldwide, with a 5-year survival rate of less than 10%.
Last year they resolved the structures of these proteins at the atomic level–the previous step to the computational design of inhibitors, which is being undertaken in collaboration with Modesto Orozco, at the same centre.
One compound — from the leaves of the Chinese wormwood plant, Artemisia annua, seemed to vanquish malaria parasites in the blood. Tu's discovery remains the fastest acting antimalarial, and artemisinin-based combination therapies are recommended by the World Health Organization as the first-line treatment for uncomplicated malaria. The most common areas where Melasma is found are the bridge of the nose, forehead, upper lip, and the cheeks.


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Cancer de l ovaire maladie chronique
Chinese herbs planting seeds


Comments to «Chinese girl discovers cure for cancer found»

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