Can A Natural Vitamin Help Slow Lung Cancer? Study Looks At Role Vitamin D May Play In Shielding Lungs From Tumors
Building miniature ships is a tedious hobby, but David Rose doesn't mind. He says it keeps his hands occupied, something cigarettes did for the last 40 years. Between his 3-pack a day habit and his job working with asbestos in the pit of a steel mill, David was living a risky life.
"I got down in the pit with a broom and swept all this stuff up to the end and shoveled it out with a shovel. I lived in a cloud of asbestos for a year and a half," says David.
Eventually, David developed lung cancer. Because he caught it early, his doctors were able to remove it. To keep it from coming back, scientists at Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, New York are trying a new approach. They're giving patients high doses of Vitamin D, after noticing how potent it could be in the lab.
"In cancer cells grown in the lab, as well as in animal models, it can actually stop cells from dividing, growing and spreading," says Alex Adejei, MD at Roswell Park Cancer Institute. This is crucial for lung cancer patients. By the time many are diagnosed, the disease is already advanced, and treatments options are limited. In the future, this common vitamin may offer patients new hope.
"With an agent that's shown as much activity as vitamin D in this population, we have an opportunity to slow the progression of lung cancer and maybe reverse it," says Mary Ellen Reid, PhD at Roswell Park Cancer Institute.
David has signed up for the study in an effort to both keep his lung cancer in check and to help doctors in their efforts to build new defenses against this deadly disease.
Researchers at Roswell Park Cancer Institute launched their study after measuring the Vitamin D levels of colon cancer patients. They noticed that those who had higher levels of Vitamin D fared better that those who didn't.
Produced for the Roswell Park Cancer Institute by MediaSourceTV.
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