Viagra could remarkably also help to prevent colon cancer

colon cancerThe potential and boundaries of erectile dysfunction medications such as Viagra appear to know no limits as researchers are considering the possibility that such drugs may be used to both prevent and treat cancer of the colon (also sometimes known as bowel, rectal or colorectal cancer).

Viagra is just one of three erectile dysfunction medications currently being studied as an option for colon cancer prevention and treatment. The early indications are that they provide a protection to the colon from inflammation caused by a number of factors such as a diet high in processed and red meat, smoking, obesity and even consuming small amounts of alcohol.

Dr Darren Browning, cancer researcher at the Georgia Regents University Cancer Center, and his team have been given a $1.8 million grant from the U.S. National Cancer Institute to further explore the possibilities and research who is most at benefit or could be at risk from being prescribed such medications for this particular type of cancer.

Like the majority of the components in the human body, balance is the key for a healthy colon, or large intestines as it is also known as, which means a successful regulation of old cells dying and new cells forming and differentiating in this dynamic, caustic surrounding. “It’s basically the inside of your body exposed to the outside world,” says Dr Browning.

To keep your colon moist and lubricated, it is lined with a jelly-like substance that your intestines produce, called mucus. This sits on top of epithelial cells comprising of many tiny pits known as ‘crypts’, which are important as they contain stem cells responsible for the generation of proliferating cells. These rise up and morph into new cells to aid the absorption of nutrients and maintain production of mucus – emitted out of the crypts continuously to block the entry of foreign objects.

“They replace the whole lining every few days,” Dr Browning said. Loss of proliferation control in the crypts is thought to lead to colon cancer as once the protective barrier of mucus and endothelial cells has been broken down, underlying tissue is exposed to the contents of the gut resulting in inflammation, and ultimately, cancer.

Dr Browning comments: “We’ve found a way of activating a tumour suppressive pathway in the gut using drugs already in use for erectile dysfunction. We became interested in the erectile dysfunction drugs because they are known to increase the levels of a chemical called cyclicGMP, which can activate PKG.”

The enzyme called type 2 protein kinase G, or PKG2, helps to protect cells inside the barrier and reduces the rate of colon cell proliferation. Dr Browning and his team decided to look to heighten the activation of PKG inside the colon to both decrease the risk of cancer and as a help to patients suffering with inflammatory bowel disease.

Erectile dysfunction medications after activating PKG, relax the smooth, circular muscles surrounding blood vessels to help fill the vessels with blood; a similar method of reducing pulmonary hypertension in babies born prematurely.

The medications will now be administered by mouth to two mouse models; the first with a genetic predisposition for colon cancer and the second suffering from a common, inflammatory disease. Dr Browning is hopeful the drugs will prevent or significantly decrease colon cancer incidence, and wants to know which drug in particular could be the most effective.

Dr Browning concluded: “If the drugs continue to work as our studies to date have indicated, the next stage is clinical trials because these drugs are in the clinic already.”

Related Posts - MSC News

This entry was posted in Cialis, General Health News, Levitra, Life Style, Men's Health, Smoking, Viagra and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.