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Fructose May Proliferate Pancreatic Cancer Cells

Posted Aug 03 2010 12:00am

A new study has shown that pancreatic cancers use the sugar fructose, very common in the Western diet, to activate a key cellular pathway that drives cell division, helping the cancer to grow more quickly. Researchers have determined that high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), a corn-based sweetener that has been on the market since about 1970 may speed up cancer growth. HFCS accounts for more than 40 percent of the caloric sweeteners added to foods and beverages, and it is the sole sweetener used in American soft drinks. The U.S. government has been working with food manufacturers to reduce the amount of HFCS in foods with the obesity epidemic. Researchers are recommending reducing intake of HFCS. These findings show that cancer cells can readily metabolize fructose to increase proliferation. More work will be done to determine if they can block the uptake of fructose. Fructose is also present in fruit but no information was available on dietary restrictions of it.

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