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How baking soda improves cancer treatment.

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Consuming baking soda may help immunotherapy drugs to fight difficult-to-treat tumors. This cheap and simple intervention may eventually improve current cancer treatments.

Within tumors, large portions are deprived of oxygen. Scientists know that these hypoxic regions tend to be the most resistant to treatment.



If a cell is unable to access adequate oxygen, it slows down and enters what is known as a quiescent state.

The molecular switch mTORC1 is responsible for assessing the situation before telling the cell whether or not it should divide.

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If mTORC1 is not present, the cell’s internal processes are shut down. Deep within tumors, mTORC1 activity is almost non-existent.

Baking soda, acid, and cancer

New research delves deeper into this mechanism and finds an incredibly simple way to reverse it: baking soda.

The study took place at the Wistar Institute and the University of Pennsylvania, both of which are located in Philadelphia. The scientists published their results this week in the journal Cell.

Lysosomes, the minuscule bags of enzymes that break down proteins and other biomolecules, were found to play a key role.

The lysosomes of interest are usually situated next to the nucleus. However, when conditions are more acidic — which develops during hypoxia — protein motors transport lysosomes carrying mTOR to other locations.

This movement of mTOR away from the nucleus also transports it away from a protein called RHEB, which is essential for it to function. Without its primary activator, mTOR activity is reduced, the cell’s processes slow down, and most metabolic activity stops.

Boosting immunotherapy

When a cell enters this quiescent state, cancer drugs are much less effective. So, the researchers wanted to see if it could be overturned. They found that, when mice were given baking soda in their drinking water, the acidity of the quiescent regions of tumors was reversed.

Once this had occurred, lysosomes were sent back toward the nucleus, mTOR was activated by RHEB, and cellular processes were switched back on.

Dang explains what the scientists saw after mice had consumed baking soda, saying, “[T]he entire tumor lights up with mTOR activity. The prediction would be that by reawakening these cells, you could make the tumor far more sensitive to therapy.”

Cancer immunotherapy has been demonstrated to be less effective in acidic conditions because T cell activation is reduced, so this finding could have important ramifications.

Acidity’s role in cancer progression and treatment is a fledgling area of research, which means that much more work will surely follow. Dang and his team plan to continue their experimentation, focusing on how acidity impacts immunotherapy.

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Health & Lifestyle

Climate change forces El Paso to make treated sewage water turn into drinking water

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As the global climate changes and water becomes an increasingly scarce resource, a number of cities such as India, Australia has earlier express their concern to reduce water shortage.



The authorities has disclosed to her citizens stating that “What we are seeing is a systematic increase in temperature, so we’re seeing the snow-melt runoff earlier…and more rapid melt than average. And again, for a given level of snow-pack, less runoff actually reaching the river and reaching our reservoir.

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However, in a bid to mitigate the water shortages,  El Paso is set to become one of the first cities in the US to treat sewage water and turn it into drinking water.

Chief technical officer of El Paso Water, Mr Gilbert Trejo said that the facility to treat sewage water with multiple steps of filtration such as carbon and UV filtration to make sure no pathogens or microbes are present.

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Adding that It will help to solve a major supply problem in the city and what’s more, some locals even say it tastes better.

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Food & Cuisine

Satellites warn African farmers of pest parasitic diseases

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Prof Charlotte Watts, chief scientific adviser for the UK’s Department for International Development, which funds the plant doctor scheme, says a new initiative with CABI and the UK Space Agency (UKSA) will use the network to prevent, rather than just reduce infestations.



When speaking to the newsmen, she expressed that the idea is to use satellite data collected by the UKSA to develop a system that is able to predict when pest infestations will strike a week or more in advance.

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It is also designed to inform the farmers through mobile phone alert for them to take precautions, adding that it will help boost farmers incomes and mitigate poverty rate.

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The modern forecast is being used in Kenya, Ghana and Zambia and will be rolled out soon to other part of the world.

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