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 How are Cancer and Diabetes Associated? The Relationship Between Cancer and Diabetes

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 How are Cancer and Diabetes Associated? The Relationship Between Cancer and Diabetes

Cancer and Diabetes     Cancer And Diabetes

The link between Cancer and diabetes is encoded in your genes. A profile of persons at high risk of acquiring Cancer would resemble the shape of those at increased risk of developing diabetes. 

There has been a clear association between the two diseases for decades, but scientists have recently begun to determine why. High blood glucose levels are a standard indicator of diabetes. 

Researchers suspect these levels may also play a role in cancer development. 

On the other hand, several cancer treatments have been linked to diabetes because they increase sugar in the blood or reduce the body’s natural insulin production.

Diabetics suffer from insufficient or absent insulin production from the pancreas, which prevents glucose from being used as an energy source. 

Treatment for both conditions may be complicated because many people suffer from both diseases. Some cancer therapies, including steroids, might make maintaining a healthy blood sugar level hard. 

Poorer cancer treatment outcomes, slower wound healing, and an increased risk of infection have all been linked to elevated blood sugar levels. Hyperglycemia, or high blood sugar, may also contribute to the exhaustion felt by cancer patients.

 Particular diabetics may find it challenging to eat healthily and maintain appropriate blood sugar levels due to appetite loss brought on by specific cancer therapies.

Some of the deadliest and most common killers in the USA are Cancer and diabetes. About 10.5% of Americans, or 35 million people, have diabetes, according to the U.S. 

Centers for Disease and another 88 million adults are at risk for developing diabetes. According to the American Cancer Society, over 17 million people in the United States will be directly or indirectly affected by Cancer this year.

Cardiovascular Disease is a well-documented risk factor for diabetes., stroke, blindness, kidney disease, and vascular-related amputations. And now there’s proof that it causes Cancer.

Cancer and diabetes are connected; The increased risk of developing certain cancers among people with type 1 and 2 diabetes has long perplexed medical researchers.  

Today, scientists reveal that they may have figured out what’s behind this double whammy. Due to DNA damage occurring more frequently and less frequently during high blood sugar, researchers found a correlation between high blood sugar and increased cancer risk.

The Link in the DNA

Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) was investigated in a 2019 study conducted at City of Hope, a cancer and diabetes research and treatment facility. When DNA in a cell undergoes a change that leads to unchecked proliferation, Cancer develops.

The research showed that high blood sugar levels harmed DNA. 

High glucose levels can cause genomic instability and promote the growth of cancer cells because they affect the DNA structure and inhibit its normal repair processes.

Investigation into whether or not currently available medications can reduce cancer risk in diabetics continues. 

Metformin, a standard diabetes treatment, has proven effective in the past. Metformin promotes DNA repair and lowers blood sugar levels.

As a result of its effects on insulin decrease and cell signaling pathways that regulate cell growth and division, metformin has been studied for its potential anti-cancer effects.

According to the City of Hope, the relationship between Cancer and glucose was recognized as early as the 1930s by the Nobel Prize-winning German scientist Otto Warburg. 

Cancer cells utilize glucose as fuel, absorbing and metabolizing the sugar considerably faster than normal cells. 

Because of this insight, cancer research has progressed. One way positron emission tomography (PET) scans aid in cancer detection is by highlighting regions of very high glucose uptake.

Possible Links Between Diabetes and Cancer

Type 1 and type 2 diabetes were found to increase the risk of acquiring specific cancers in a study published in July, with the increased risk being more pronounced for women than men. Scientists analyzed nearly 20 million people’s health data from 47 worldwide research.

The following results were obtained byOxford in Great Britain about Cancer and diabetes in men and women:

  • The risk of developing Cancer for a woman with diabetes is increased by 27% compared to a woman without diabetes.
  • The risk of Cancer in males with diabetes is 19% higher than in men without the disease.
  • Liver cancer is 12 percent more common in males with diabetes than in women with diabetes.
  • Women with diabetes are more likely to experience:
  • The chance of getting leukemia is increased by 15%.
  • Increased danger of stomach cancer by 14%
  • Increased danger of developing mouth cancer by 13% 
  • Increased danger of developing kidney cancer by 11%

Those who suffer from type 2 diabetes, also known as adult-onset diabetes, may have more chances of spreading Cancer to other parts of the body, developing multiple types of Cancer, including those of the breast, endometrial, pancreas, liver, kidneys, and colon.

The following are some additional risk factors that have been linked to the progression of Cancer in diabetic patients:

  • Insulin, a hormone used to treat diabetes, may also raise cancer risk because it increases cell development.
  • Overweight people have increased adipokine production in their fat tissue. Inflammation is a potential side effect of these hormones.

You can find over 9,500 talks there on all sorts of scientific subjects.

“We all know for a long time that persons with diabetes have as much as a 2.5-fold greater risk for some cancers,” 

John Termini, Ph.D., presented the research at the symposium. Cancers of the ovary, breast, kidney, and other organs fall into this category. Cancer rates are expected to climb in tandem with the rising prevalence of diabetes.

Hormonal Instability Contributes to the Increased Cancer Risk. 

Researchers have hypothesized that hormonal instability contributes to the increased cancer risk experienced by people with diabetes.

According to Termini, “insulin is not efficiently delivering glucose into cells in persons with type 2 diabetes.” As a result, the pancreas produces excessive insulin, a condition known as hyperinsulinemia.

 For regulating blood sugar levels, hormones are used to name insulin and stimulate cell proliferation; however, they have also been linked to Cancer. More adipokines are produced by the body’s fat tissue when a person is overweight; it further contributes to the danger of T2D.

 These hormones foster long-term inflammation, a factor related to Cancer. According to Termini, “the most frequent hypothesis” is that hormones are responsible for the higher cancer risk. Although this may be somewhat at play, “there hasn’t been a lot of substantial data to support this.”

The City of Hope is Cancer and Diabetes Research and Treatment Facility, 

But Termini, who works there, has a different theory. He pondered that the elevated blood glucose levels observed in diabetes could cause DNA damage, rendering the genome unstable and increasing cancer risk.

As a result, Termini and coworkers investigated diabetes models in tissue culture and rodents for the presence of chemically changed DNA bases, often known as adducts. 

N2-(1-carboxyethyl)-2′-deoxyguanosine (CEdG) was discovered to be a DNA adduct that was more prevalent in the diabetic models compared to both normal cells and animals. 

In addition, excessive glucose levels disrupt the repair process in the cells. According to Termini, “exposure to excessive glucose levels leads to both DNA adducts and the suppression of their repair,” which may contribute to genomic instability and Cancer.

Termini and Coworkers Just Finished Clinical Research Assessing CEdG and its RNA Analogue,

 CEG in persons with type 2 diabetes. C.G. and CEG levels in persons with diabetes were significantly more significant than those without the condition, just like in mice.

However, it was different from where the team stopped. The group sought to identify the molecular causes behind the cells’ inability to repair the adducts. 

The transcription factor HIF1 and the signaling molecule mTORC1 were shown to have decreased activity in diabetics, suggesting their involvement.

 Several repair-related genes are activated by HIF1. 

Termini explains that DNA repair is improved, and DNA damage is mitigated when HIF1 is stabilized in a high-glucose environment. Stimulating mTORC1 has increased HIF1 expression because “mTORC1 controls HIF1.”

Several Medications that Activate HIF1 or mTORC1, as Claimed by Termini, are Already in Use. 

Suppose the drugs successfully lower cancer risk in animal models of diabetes. In that case, they will be tried out in humans. Metformin, a common diabetes medication, increases DNA repair and decreases blood sugar, as pointed out by Termini.

 Since “we are evaluating it in combination with medications that specifically stabilize HIF1 or boost mTORC1 signaling in diabetic animal models,” 

he believes additional study is needed to determine metformin’s effects on diabetes.

 Additionally, better blood sugar control may be the most effective strategy for diabetics to reduce their risk of Cancer. “maintaining glycemic control is difficult for most people even if it appears to be such an easy remedy,” as Termini puts it.

Diabetes is More Likely to Develop After Cancer Therapy.

The chance of having diabetes increases in people with a history of developing Cancer, and vice versa.

  • Cancer patients had a sixfold higher risk of developing diabetes than the general population. It could be the method of treatment rather than the Cancer itself.
  • Radiation therapy intended to kill cancer cells may also kill insulin-producing cells in certain body parts. Steroids, commonly used to combat chemotherapy-induced nausea, are also known to increase glucose levels in the blood.
  • The risk of getting diabetes is highest within two years of finishing cancer therapies. Still, it stays heightened after that, according to a study published in JAMA Oncology.
  • According to a Cure Magazine article, immunotherapies may also increase the risk of developing diabetes. Checkpoint inhibitors are frequently used to treat kidney, lung, and blood malignancies. 
  • Still, they can cause severe hyperglycemia in certain patients. Researchers believe that immunotherapies may also target insulin-producing pancreatic cells and cancer cells. 
  • This reaction has the potential to bring on a more severe case of type 1 diabetes, which is an autoimmune disease. Furthermore, those diagnosed with pancreatic cancer are 5 times more extra chances of developing type 2 diabetes than those who have never been sick.

Characteristics Shared Between Cancer and Diabetes

  T2 diabetes is responsible for 90% or more of all cases of the disease. have many of the same risk factors as Cancer, according to the American Diabetes Association (ADA).

 Some examples of these risks include:

  • You’re more likely to have cancer or type 2 diabetes as you age.
  • The incidence of these disorders is higher in males than in females.
  • Cancer and type 2 diabetes are more prevalent among people of African ancestry and non-Hispanic whites.
  • The risk of 2 diabetes and some types of Cancer rises proportionally to one’s body mass index.
  • Physical inactivity increases the likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes and some types of Cancer.
  • Cigarette smoking has been related to several malignancies and is thought to increase the likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes.
  • More than one drink per day for women and more than two for males increases the risk of developing diabetes and/or Cancer.
  • Type 2 diabetes isn’t the only malignancy linked to obesity; 13 others, including:
  • Uterine malignancy
  • Gastric carcinoma
  • Colon cancer
  • Malignant neoplasm of the kidneys

Methods of Protection

Reduce your chances of developing diabetes or Cancer by following the advice of the ADA.

  • Eliminating any excess pounds you may be carrying.
  • Cutting back on processed foods and loading up on fresh produce, whole grains, fruits, low-fat or fat-free dairy products, lean meats, skinless poultry, fish, shellfish, and eggs while watching your portion sizes is a great way to improve your diet and live a healthier life.
  • Keeping active using exercise.
  • Cessation of Tobacco Use


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