Posts tagged ‘liver cancer’

There is a general belief that moderate drinking lowers the risk of heart diseases since studies have shown that moderate drinkers have reported lower cardiovascular problems than heavy drinkers or complete abstainers. However, what is often ignored is a visible link between alcohol consumption and the deadly cancer. Here is a report:

1.      Liver cancer: Alcohol is one of the major causes of liver cancer. After years of heavy drinking the liver tends to do some self-repairing and in the process causes a mutation which leads to the development of cancer. The risk of liver cancer is higher in a heavy drinker who is also infected by Hepatitis B or C.

2.      Esophageal cancer: Cancer of the Esophagus is, reportedly, higher in case of regular drinkers. However, the risk gets heightened when a person indulges in both smoking and drinking.

3.      Breast Cancer: Cancer Research UK  states that the risk of breast cancer is increased by 9% for every unit of alcohol drunk everyday. Breast cancer occurs due to many factors and undoubtedly alcohol plays a key role in it. It is believed that alcohol affects breast cancer by increasing the levels of estrogen.

4.      Oral cancer: Heavy drinkers are said to be 4 times more likely to develop mouth cancer than their non-drinking counterparts. A study from the UK shows that the incidence of mouth cancer has increased by 25% over the last few years. This has been accompanied by a decline in the rate of smoking which suggests that the increase has occurred owing to alcohol consumption.

Thus, we can see that there is a direct link between alcohol consumption and various forms of cancer. Though it is not precisely known how alcohol causes cancer, there is a notion that alcohol damages DNA and, therefore, causes cancer to develop. Though a lot more research needs to be done in this field, we can safely surmise that alcohol does have a role in development of cancer and so it is best advisable to shun that sinful bottle.


Scientists engaged in medical research have found that blocking an active gene in liver cancer cells can actually halt the process of chemotherapy resistance thereby increasing the chances of survival. A synthetic molecule designed by a team of scientists has been found to stop the activation of such oncogenes. The cancerous liver cells can then respond to the chemotherapy.

The oncogene STAT3 when blocked can impair the protective functions of a particular protein  making the liver cells respond to treatment by chemotherapy.

The researchers are now anticipating that the successful creation of the synthetic molecule based drug will help the patients overcome cancer. The clinical tests and animal experimentation are yet to be completed.

The molecule known as LLL12 has been used to block STAT3 successfully thereby killing of the cancerous cells in breast and pancreatic cancer as well.

The senior author of the study, Jiayuh Lin, stated that an intravenous drug based on this particular molecule can be manufactured easily. It would be inexpensive as well. Lin also serves as the associate professor of pediatrics at the Ohio State University.

The researchers have also found evidence of STAT3 blockage by LLL12 having a downstream effect where it can successfully block other cancer inducing STAT3 regulated genes as well.  This particular molecule is currently believed to have tremendous potential in curing cancer.

The team of scientists working on the creation of LLL12 was led by Jiayuh Lin and reported their success earlier this year. The procedure of designing the molecule included the use of powerful computers as well as various computational methods.

The results of the study can be found in the most recent issue of the Journal of Biological Chemistry.