A compound found in coral is extremely promising. According to scientists, it could prove to be a new pillar in the fight against cancer.
Science is advancing at a dazzling pace and yet cancer remains one of the biggest causes of death in France and around the world. Thanks to research, we are now better able to detect certain cancers early: in fact, we are more aware and know better certain warning signs. But the treatment itself could see a meteoric advance soon thanks to eleutherobin, a promising compound, which scientists have finally succeeded in synthesizing in the laboratory.
What is eleutherobin
In the scientific community, eleutherobin is not a recent name. For many years, it has been known that this compound, discovered on a type of Australian soft coral, has many anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties.
But until now, researchers had not succeeded in synthesizing it, which made its exploitation in large-scale treatments complicated, if not impossible. But new studies have shown that, on the one hand, this substance was indeed produced by Australian corals, and on the other hand, it is possible to synthesize it by programming bacteria with coral DNA.
Towards large-scale production?
But why has eleutherobin been of such interest to researchers since 1990? In one article, theuniversity of utah explain that :
“This chemical disrupts the cytoskeleton, a key component of cells, and soft corals use it as a defense against predators. But laboratory studies have shown that the compound is also a powerful cancer cell growth inhibitor.”
The possibility of making eleutherobin in the laboratory is a complete game-changer. Scientists will now try to find a way to reproduce it in large quantities. Paul Scesa, the main author of this studyhas indicated : “My hope is to one day be able to give this compound to a doctor.”