Scientists discover that nicotine promotes spread of lung cancer to the brain

Scientists discover that nicotine promotes spread of lung cancer to the brain

Among people who have the most common type of lung cancer, up to 40% develop metastatic brain tumors, with an average survival time of less than six months.

But why non-small-cell lung cancer so often spreads to the brain has been poorly understood.

Now scientists at Wake Forest School of Medicine have found that nicotine, a non-carcinogenic chemical found in tobacco, actually promotes the spread, or metastasis, of lung cancer cells into the brain.

“Based on our findings, we don’t think that nicotine replacement products are the safest way for people with lung cancer to stop smoking,” said Kounosuke Watabe, Ph.D., professor of cancer biology at Wake Forest School of Medicine and lead author of the study.

Full article at Science Daily