Researchers have uncovered a strange way that asbestos-related tumours grow, which could pave the way towards better treatments.
The scientists at Adelaide’s Flinders University have found that malignant mesothelioma tumours are able to transform into blood vessels, promoting their own growth.
Associate Professor Sonja Klebe said the behaviour was unusual.
“Instead of waiting for the outside of the tissue to grow blood vessels in, the tumour cells themselves branch out, growing blood vessels that reach out into surrounding tissues, tapping into the native vasculature,” she said.
Existing tumour treatments target blood vessels that grow into the cancer, and not the other way around.
“So I think a future approach would involve treating both of these types of vessels to more or less starve the tumour of blood supply,” Associate Professor Klebe said.
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