Researchers at Pennsylvania State University have identified a compound in fish oil that appears to target leukemia stem cells and could lead to a cure for the disease. Called delta-12prostaglandin J3 or D12-PGJ3, the compound targeted and destroyed leukemia stem cells in mice.
Head researcher, Sandeep Prabhu, associate professor of immunology and molecular toxicology at the university indicates that the compound is derived from eicosapentanoic acid (EPA) an Omega 3 fatty acid found in fish and fish oil.
In the experiments, the mice that received the fish oil compound were completely cured of leukemia and had no relapse. Dr. Prabhu says, “Research in the past on fatty acids has shown the health benefits off fatty acids on the cardiovascular system and brain development, particularly in infants, but we have shown that some metabolites of omega-3 have the ability to selectively kill the leukemia-causing stem cells in mice.” He added that “The important thing is that the mice were completely cured of leukemia with no relapse.”
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