Health La Trobe University researchers look to unlikely hero in the fight against cancer

La Trobe University researchers look to unlikely hero in the fight against cancer

Scientists at the La Trobe Institute for Molecular Science have identified that a molecule occurring in the flower of the tobacco plant has the ability to identify and destroy cancer. Called NaD1, it works by forming a pincer-like structure that grips onto lipids present in the membrane of cancer cells and rips it open, causing the cell to expel its contents and explode.

“One of the biggest issues with current cancer therapies is that the effect of the treatment is indiscriminate,” Dr Hulett said. “In contrast, we’ve found NaD1 can target cancerous cells and has little or no effect on those that are healthy. We are confident there is potential for this discovery to translate to therapeutic use in humans.”

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[img source] B. Mackay (CCA 2.0) bit.ly/1oVHJlm