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Although health experts have long been aware that obese individuals have a 50 percent higher chance of developing colorectal cancer compared to lean people, the link between the metabolic condition and the increased cancer risk has not been clearly understood. Now, a new study has shown the biological connection between the two.

In the process, the researchers identified an FDA-approved drug that can potentially prevent the development of the cancer.

For the new study published in Cancer Research, author Scott Waldman from Thomas Jefferson University along with his colleagues placed genetically engineered mice on different diets. They found that giving mice a high-caloric diet resulted in the loss of guanylin, a key hormone in the intestine.

The guanylin hormone receptor serves as a tumor suppressor and in the absence of the hormone, this receptor is silenced, setting off conditions that could lead to cancer development.

Through genetic replacement of this hormone, however, the tumor suppressor can be reversed. In the study, this prevented the development of cancer even if the animals continued to consume excess calories.

Read More: Techtimes

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