A Petri dish in a laboratory. Image source: pogonici/Adobe A Petri dish in a laboratory. Image source: pogonici/Adobe

A drug for diarrhea can kill aggressive cancer cells

  • New research suggests that a drug used to slow down an upset digestive tract may actually be useful in the treatment of cancer.
  • The medication, called loperamide, is often used to treat diarrhea, but it can also induce the destruction of certain tumor cells. 
  • Additional research is needed, but the findings could lead to novel treatments for certain aggressive types of cancer.

In the fight against cancer, doctors and scientists have tried many, many unconventional things. Sometimes existing drugs that weren’t originally intended to treat certain ailments prove beneficial later on, and it’s not until extensive research on a drug’s effects is done that scientists truly know what any given medication is capable of.

Now, the anti-diarrhea drug loperamide is gaining attention from doctors after it was shown by a team of scientists at Goethe University to be helpful in the treatment of glioblastoma, a particularly aggressive and deadly type of cancer. The drug induces a state in human cells that healthy cells can withstand, but that cancer cells cannot.

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By Mike Wehner / BGR Reporter

Mike Wehner has reported on technology and video games for the past decade, covering breaking news and trends in VR, wearables, smartphones, and future tech.

Most recently, Mike served as Tech Editor at The Daily Dot, and has been featured in USA Today, Time.com, and countless other web and print outlets. His love of reporting is second only to his gaming addiction.


(Source: bgr.com; December 24, 2020; https://tinyurl.com/yd4o6me5)
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