While science has been searching for the cure to cancer, millions of lives are taken each year by this disease. Arsenic has always been know to be a powerful poison which has been documented through out history. However, now a new study in Chile have uncovered a possible cure for breast cancer.
The study focused on one region of South America where people were inadvertently exposed to arsenic in drinking water due to it being present in certain minerals in the water. This accident led to a noticeable decrease in breast cancer in the region where the exposure occurred. The deaths decreased by 70 percent in women who were under the age of 60.
Lead author, professor Allan Smith, said: ‘What we found was astonishing.
‘We’ve been studying the long-term effects of arsenic in this population for many years, focusing on increased disease and mortality attributed to the historical exposure to arsenic in this population.’ (source)
What makes these findings even more interesting is that the arsenic also seems to only attack the cancerous cells while it avoids the healthy breast tissue.
“As part of the study, researchers at the Stanford Cancer Institute found human breast cancer cells grown in the lab are killed by arsenic.
And normal breast cells were also found to be more resistant to the chemical.”
The idea of using arsenic to treat cancer is not entirely new. In, 2000 the FDA approved the use of arsenic for cancer for those under going treatment for leukaemia.
When asked if the treatment should be used
Professor Smith said: ‘Not yet. We do not know if the treatment will work, but carefully designed clinical trials should take place as soon as possible based on this new evidence.’
The study was published in the open-access journal EBioMedicine.
It’s important to make sure these findings can indeed be a cure to breast cancer. This could be the glimmer of hope that could lead to a cure.