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Old 01-19-2009, 03:27 AM
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Default Dr. Otto Warburg Vindicated

Dr. Otto Warburg Vindicated

Seventy-eight years after Warburg received science's highest honor,
the 1931 Nobel Prize for medicine, researchers from Boston College
and Washington University School of Medicine report new evidence in
support of the original Warburg Theory of Cancer.

In contrast to healthy cells, which generate energy by using oxygen
to breakdown a simple acid (pyruvate) within the mitochondria, tumors
and cancer cells generate [only 1/5 of normal] energy through the
anerobic breakdown of glucose, a process called glycolysis.

[Glycolysis is a sequence of ten reactions involving ten intermediate
compounds in the Krebs, or citric acid cycle. The first nine steps
are anerobic and the tenth step is where oxygen comes in, burns up
the residue, and produces 80% of the energy, with the resultants
being water and carbon dioxide.]

Because of this difference between healthy cells and cancer cells,
Warburg argued, cancer should be interpreted as a type of
mitochondrial disease.

In the years that followed, Warburg's theory inspired controversy and
debate as researchers instead thought they found that genetic
mutations within cells caused malignant transformation and
uncontrolled cell growth. Many researchers argued Warburg's findings
really identified the effects, and not the causes, of cancer since no
mitochondrial defects could be found that were consistently
associated with malignant transformation in cancers.
[In actuality, the genetic effects are the resultants.]

Boston College biologists and colleagues at Washington University
School of Medicine found new evidence to support Warburg's theory by
examining mitochondrial lipids in a diverse group of mouse brain
tumors, specifically a complex lipid known as cardiolipin (CL). They
reported their findings in the December edition of the Journal of
Lipid Research.

Abnormalities in cardiolipin impair mitochondrial function and energy
production. Boston College doctoral student Michael Kiebish and
Professors Thomas N. Seyfried and Jeffrey Chuang compared the
cardiolipin content in normal mouse brain mitochondria with CL
content in several types of brain tumors taken from mice.

Major abnormalities in cardiolipin composition in the mitochondria
were present in all types of tumors and closely associated with
significant reductions in energy-generating activities.

The paper, "Cardiolipin and Electron Transport Chain Abnormalities in
Mouse Brain Tumor Mitochondria: Lipidomic Evidence Supporting the
Warburg Theory of Cancer," can be viewed at:
J. Lipid Res. -- Sign In Page
Source: Boston College
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