Scientists at Denmark’s University of Copenhagen Biotic Research and Innovation Centre are trying to find a way to deactivate cells called fibroblasts, which can allow a malignant tumor to change and spread throughout the body.
So far scientists have been able to observe how, and under which conditions, cancer cells activate fibroblasts. Finding out how to deactivate the fibroblast cells could lead to treatments for types if cancer that otherwise have been incurable.
Researchers in the past have failed to kill fibroblasts, so now the focus is on deactivating the ones in cancer cells. Fibroblasts are an important part of human tissue, because they regulate the natural balance of the tissue. Normally, fibroblasts are only active if something is wrong. But cancer cells are able to control the local chemical signals and influence the fibroblasts to produce an environment suitable for tumor growth.