Skin Cancer & Wrinkles
Two new studies were released recently finding results that linked age-related skin changes raises the risk of melanoma spreading to all organs. It was revealed that the same thing that causes wrinkles is also linked to metastatic melanoma. Professor Ashani Weeranatna, one of the researchers involved with one of the studies, reports that her team found another key protein involved in the maintenance of our skin, in addition to collagen and elastin, two proteins are well known to be involved in this process.
Her team found a factor called HAPLN1, which is a protein that she states “you can basically think of as a knitting needle that binds collagen and elastin together and that was lost during aging.” Now how this new protein relates to cancer is that the HAPLN1 kept the tumor cells sitting in the skin tightly bound in the network of collagen and elastin. Once its levels decreased, it allows for more room for the tumor cells to leave and spread all over the body.
This new protein was also found to affect vessels around the lymph nodes. They found that when they injected HAPLN1 into the skin of mice, the tight network of collagen and elastin could be restored. This research has applications in not only oncology but also potentially anti-aging, as you could theoretically prevent cancer and its spreading while also gaining anti-aging effects by affecting wrinkles.
Although this research is currently in preclinical stages, as seen by animal testing, it does provide insight into a potential new treatment method, and these researchers are working to obtain a synthetic version of HAPLN1 in order to assess its use in tumor therapy. It can be a groundbreaking discovery in clinical medicine and anti-aging treatment.