We’ve always been told to eat more fruits and vegetables if we want to live a long and healthy life, but there are so many things that we don’t have control over, that sometimes we tend to feel overwhelmed. A new amazing cell metabolism discovery could give us that leverage over disease that could very well make us disease-free.
A cell is immensely complex structure; its metabolism decides when it hungry, when to reproduce and when it needs to die and be replaced by new cells. Now, when a virus invades a healthy cell, it changes the cell’s metabolism and reprograms it so that it does everything in its power to keep the virus alive and thriving. Up until now scientists didn’t understand how a virus can do that to the cell’s metabolism, but now, researchers from the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center have published a study in the journal Cell Metabolism which sheds light on this process.
Cell Metabolism Discovery
The researchers made this cell metabolism discovery that explains exactly how the virus manages to reprogram the cells they invade. Ming Tai, the lead scientist of this study, explained that they had discovered the way an adenovirus (a virus that causes the common cold) reprograms the cell it takes over: it makes it take on more glucose! Glucose is a very important nutrient for viruses and cells in general. Once the cells are able to take on more glucose, then the virus uses it to grow larger and create energy and thus, begin to replicate inside the cell walls.
This cell metabolism discovery is absolutely fascinating and it opens the door for so much more research and clinical trials. Drugs that can inhibit increased glucose uptake can be developed and the common cold or the flu would be a thing of the past. By analogy, because another discovery revealed that when healthy cells turn into cancer cells they act in a very similar matter as cells infected by a virus, so the same type of drugs can be used to stop the growth of cancer cells or tumors.
What are your thoughts on this cell metabolism discovery? Care to share?