Botox Injections in Nerves Surrounding Tumor Cells Found to Retard Stomach Cancer Growth in Mice

Published By : 21 Aug 2014 | Published By : QYRESEARCH

Botox may have helped millions in looking younger over the years of its inception, but a new research presents a whole new world of opportunities for the drug. 

A recent research from the medical center of Columbia University has provided hints at the probable use of Botox in blocking the growth of stomach cancer. The research studied the effect of blocking nerve signals in the cancer affected area of stomach by surgery or through the use of Botox.  

It has long been known that cancers in both humans and mice have a lot of nerves in and around cancer cells. Scientists behind the current study analyzed role of these nerves in the conception and growth of cancer.   

For the research, scientists used three different kinds of mouse models of the cancer. When a procedure called vagatomy was performed to cut nerves around the cancer, the growth of the cancer reduced significantly and increased survival rate of the mice. When nerves from only one side of the cancer were severed, the cancer continued to grow on the other side of the stomach (the one with nerves intact), which provides further evidence of the importance of nerves in the slowdown of spreading of cancer.

One of the scientists then tried to block transmissions of signals from the nerves by injecting Botox in the nerves. The effect was found to be as stimulating as with surgical severing of the nerves.  

The scientists also found evidence of the effectiveness of nerve severing when they studied real life patients who had a recurrence of the tumor after their surgeries. Of the 37 patients studied, 13 had vagatomy procedure as a part of their cancer treatment. In all but one of these 13 cases, cancer did not develop in the regions where vagatomy was done. By contrast, recurrence of tumor was found in all the 24 cases of patients who did not receive vagatomy as a treatment.  

Stomach cancer is the second deadliest kind of cancer worldwide, and has a less than 25% survival rate of hardly 5 years.
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