Breast cancer cells could be stopped from spreading by being turned into harmless fat cells, scientists have shown.
Cancer cells are able to adapt and spread using a certain pathway, but scientists in Switzerland have been able to exploit it in a mice study.
The combination therapy uses a diabetes drug and a cancer drug which work together to convert the cells into fat and stop them from reverting back to cancer.
It still needs to be clinically tested, but the team at the University of Basel hope the process will be quicker because both drugs are already approved by the FDA.
Breast cancer is the most common cancer in the US and UK, with around 150 people diagnosed a day in the UK, according to Cancer Research.
The team, led by biochemist Professor Gerhard Christofori, targeted the cancer cells during a process called epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT).
EMT is used by the body, usually associated with the development of organs and wound healing.
For example, when you cut your finger, some of the cells become ‘fluid’, changing into a type of stem cell which can then grow into whatever kind of cell the body needs – bone, skin or blood. Read more