Medindia
Advertisement

Antarctic Fungi Identified By IIT-H Researchers To Treat Childhood Cancer

by Mohamed Fathima S on February 20, 2019 at 9:03 AM

Antarctic Fungi Identified By IIT-H Researchers To Treat Childhood Cancer
A strain of fungi found in the Antartic region has been isolated by the researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology-Hyderabad (IIT-H). The fungus could lead to the development of novel and cheaper treatment for common childhood cancer with fewer side effects.

The fungi, named psychrophiles, was screened and isolated from the soil and mosses in Schirmacher Hills, Dronning Maud Land in Antarctica. It was found to have L-Asparaginase -- an enzyme-based chemotherapeutic agent used to treat Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL), where the bone marrow produces an excess of immature lymphocytes, a form of white blood cells.
Advertisement


Psychrophiles are organisms that are capable of growth and reproduction in low temperatures in the range of -20 degree Celsius to +10 degree Celsius, such as those found in the Antarctic region.

Currently, the L-Asparaginase enzyme used for chemotherapy is derived from commonly found bacteria such as Escherichia coli and Erwinia chrysanthemi.
Advertisement

However, L-Asparaginase is always associated with two other enzymes -- glutaminase and urease -- which cause adverse side effects in patients such as pancreatitis, hemostasis abnormalities, central nervous system dysfunction and immunological reactions.

"Extensive purification steps are necessary before L-Asparaginase derived from E. Coli and E. Chrysanthemi is used as a drug to treat all. This increases the cost of the drug," said lead investigator Devarai Santhosh Kumar, in a statement.

However, the newly isolated Antarctic fungi was found to have L-Asparaginase free of glutaminase and urease.

The potency of these enzymes makes them promising as powerful drugs for diseases such as cancer, the researchers said.

In the study, published in the Scientific Reports journal, the team isolated 55 samples of fungi, of which 30 isolates had pure L-Asparaginase.

Maximum enzymatic activity was seen in a strain of fungus called Trichosporon asahii IBBLA1 and the enzyme activity was comparable to that of purified enzymes obtained from bacterial sources.

The absence of glutaminase and urease would prevent the serious side effects currently seen with the use of bacteria-derived L-Asparaginase.

"Fungal species have the ability to mimic the properties of the human cells, as both are eukaryotic in nature, which makes it easier for their usage in treatment of all", Kumar said.



Source: IANS
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
News Category
What's New on Medindia
'Hybrid Immunity' may Help Elude COVID-19 Pandemic
Stroop Effect
Plant-Based Diet may Reduce the Risk of COVID-19
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Shigellosis Cancer and Homeopathy Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia Cancer Facts Cancer Tattoos A Body Art Ringworm Common Lifestyle Habits that Cause Diseases Health Benefits of Dandelion Plant Brain Tumor in Children 

Recommended Reading
Childhood Cancer
Childhood or pediatric cancers occur in children less than 15 years of age. They are rare and ......
Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia
Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is the cancer of white blood cells characterized by excess ......
Brain Tumor in Children
An abnormal growth of cells in the brain is called brain tumor. Most tumors arise within the brain ...
Neuroblastoma
Neuroblastoma is a very rare type of childhood cancer that develops in immature nerve cells ......
Common Lifestyle Habits that Cause Diseases
Cigarette smoking, unhealthy diets, overuse of alcohol, and physical inactivity are some of the most...
Health Benefits of Dandelion Plant
What is dandelion? Dandelion greens are nutrition powerhouses with a wide range of health benefits. ...
Ringworm
Ringworm disease is a contagious superficial fungal infection affecting the skin, nails and hair see...
Shigellosis
Shigellosis or Bacillary Dysentery is a common cause of gastro-enteritis worldwide and can cause blo...
Tattoos A Body Art
Tattoos are a rage among college students who sport it for the ‘cool dude’ or ‘cool babe’ look...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use