The Secret of the Warburg Effect, How Histone Lactylation May Trigger Growth in Cancer Tumors

Stephenson Cancer Center OU Receives U.S. DOD Grant to Investigate Lung Cancer Cell Avoidance & Immunotherapy

A new study, led by researchers at the University of Chicago, provides an answer to why cancer cells consume and use nutrients differently than their healthy counterparts and how that difference contributes to their survival and growth.

A new study, published in the October 23 issue of Nature, shows that lactate, an end product of metabolism, changes the function of an immune cell known as a macrophage, thereby rewiring it to behave differently. This study, led by researchers at the University of Chicago, provides an answer to why cancer cells consume and use nutrients differently than their healthy counterparts and how that difference contributes to their survival and growth.

Almost 90 years ago, German physiologist and physician Otto Warburg first posed the question about why some cells consume nutrients differently. He knew that normal cells use oxygen to turn food into energy through a process called oxidative phosphorylation. But when he observed cancer cells, he saw that they preferred to fuel their growth through glycolysis, a process that involves consuming and breaking down glucose for energy. The phenomenon was coined "the Warburg effect."

Lactate, the...

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