Exercise helps cancer subside: Research


These, my friends, are the facts. Exercise produces more adrenaline or epinephrine hormones and molecules named Interleukin-6 that helps to diminish the growth of cancer tumours and then helps to kill it. Not just that it decreases the chances of it coming back if a person has survived cancer. These are the results of a study carried out by Dr Pernille Hojman and her team from Copenhagen University Hospital, Denmark.  According to the doctor, she said that the key secret of exercise is adrenaline, reported Cell Metabolism.

Dr. Hojman did a series of tests on mice kept in two cages, one with a wheel attached to it for the mice to exercise and the second one without a wheel. As part of the first test, some of the mice were injected with diethylnitrosamine which causes liver cancer, others with melanoma cells below the skin which causes skin cancer and yet others with melanoma cells on the tails which causes lung cancer. The result was that only 31% the mice present in the cage with the wheel actually developed cancer cells in comparison to the 75% mice in the cage without the wheel. It was also found out that after six weeks, the tumor in mice in the cage with the wheel was 61% smaller than that of the ones inside the cage with no wheel.

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To broaden the study further, Dr. Hojman took out the tumors from the mice in the cage with the wheel put them under the microscope and reported that they had more immune cells, double number of cytotoxic T-cells which help do away with the damaged, faulty and virus-infected cells. The same tumours had five times more natural killer cells which help protect other immune cells from the body.

To get more detailed results, the team did another similar experiment but the only change was that the mice were fixed to have no cytotoxic T-cells. The result from this research came out to have no difference from the previous research and this established that it is actually the natural killer cells produced after exercising that are causing the smaller size of tumor and diminished percentage of mice having cancer at all.

Dr Hojman has been working in this field for long, she had previously found out that the adrenaline or epinephrine hormone also helps to bring together natural killer cells. And the level of hormone rises in the blood stream during exercise. This led her to speculate if that was the real reason in the increase of natural killer cells which is causing the cancer to subside.

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Another experiment was performed where mice in the cage without wheel were injected with epinephrine hormone and it worked out well for them as the growth of tumor was 61% while the growth of tumor in mice inside the cage with wheel was 74% less than normal inactive mice.

The larger percentage diminishing growth of tumor in exercising mice inside the cage with wheel led them to the conclusion that there was one more thing that was being produced inside the mice because of exercise and that was molecule Interlekin-6. This is one more element that helps gather immune cells to attack the tumor.

The last experiment Dr Hojman did on purely inactive mice was that the team injected them with epinephrine hormones and Interleukin-6 molecules. This was the perfect combination to kill cancer and also protect the body from the tumor to return.

The combination can be given as anti-drug medicine to old people with cancer and the people who are too ill to exercise to kill the tumor. However, the doctor also maintained that the drug should not be used as excuse to be lazy.

Feature Image Credit: Myvmc

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