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Palmitic acid and metastatis


corybroo
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After years of recommendations to avoid or at least reduce palm oil consumption for environmental and societal reasons, this article caught my eye because it studied palmitic acid.  However, palm oid is not the only source of palmitic acid SAD (standard American diet).

Palmitic Acid is a saturated long-chain fatty acid with a 16-carbon backbone. Palmitic acid is found naturally in palm oil and palm kernel oil, as well as in butter, cheese, milk and meat.

 

Researchers discover link between dietary fat and the spread of cancer

The study … uncovers how palmitic acid alters the cancer genome, increasing the likelihood the cancer will spread.

Metastasis—or the spread—of cancer remains the main cause of death in cancer patients and the vast majority of people with metastatic cancer can only be treated, but not cured. … Metastasis is promoted by fatty acids in our diet, but it has been unclear how this works and whether all fatty acids contribute to metastasis.

one such fatty acid commonly found in palm oil, called palmitic acid, promotes metastasis in oral carcinomas and melanoma skin cancer in mice. Other fatty acids called oleic acid and linoleic acid—omega-9 and omega-6 fats found in foods such as olive oil and flaxseeds—did not show the same effect. Neither of the fatty acids tested increased the risk of developing cancer in the first place.

The research found that when palmitic acid was supplemented into the diet of mice, it not only contributed to metastasis, but also exerts long-term effects on the genome. Cancer cells that had only been exposed to palmitic acid in the diet for a short period of time remained highly metastatic even when the palmitic acid had been removed from the diet.

The researchers discovered that this "memory" is caused by epigenetic changes—changes to how our genes function. 

senior author of the paper, said: "I think it is too early to determine which type of diet could be consumed by patients with metastatic cancer that would slow down the metastatic process. That said, based on our results one would think that a diet poor in palmitic acid could be effective in slowing down the metastatic process, but much more work is needed to determine this.

 

 

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