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NCI Cancer Center News

Duke researchers find that a natural compound can attack HER2 positive breast cancer cells

  • Posted: February 18, 2014

A common compound known to fight lymphoma and skin conditions actually has a second method of action that makes it particularly deadly against certain aggressive breast tumors, researchers at Duke Medicine report. The compound is called psoralen, a natural component found in foods such as figs and celery, and researchers have long understood that it that works by disrupting DNA replication and causing cell death when activated by an energy source such as UV light.

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NCI Comprehensive Cancer Center logoAmong the research institutions NCI funds across the United States, it currently designates 68 as Cancer Centers. Largely based in research universities, these facilities are home to many of the NCI-supported scientists who conduct a wide range of intense, laboratory research into cancer’s origins and development. The Cancer Centers Program also focuses on trans-disciplinary research, including population science and clinical research. The centers’ research results are often at the forefront of studies in the cancer field.