Is there some chemical or chemicals or even special molecules that can be 'injected' into cancer cells that will turn any Apoptosis mechanisms 'back on'?

Or maybe chemicals and/or molecules that might cause a certain gene or set of genes to switch to a configuration favorable to apoptosis?

  • $\begingroup$ There are many. The two main problems are 1. regulatory network in cancer cell is different from normal cell, 2. Specific delivery of the killing molecules to cancer cells $\endgroup$ – WYSIWYG Aug 5 '14 at 12:39
  • $\begingroup$ If the regulatory network in a cancer cell is different from a normal cell could some of these differences be 'marked' by some chemical so as to identify a cancerous cell? Could such a cellular difference being marked with a biological marker be a useful target for a modified 'mild' virus? $\endgroup$ – user128932 Aug 9 '14 at 3:47

Yes, tons of things induce apoptosis. Here is a good list that you can get for research grade


Even your immune system can tell cells to "commit suicide." Now the trick is, getting drugs, proteins, pathways, and your immune system to selectively target cancer cells.

  • $\begingroup$ If it is tricky to selectively target cancer cells does this mean they are hard to detect by the host body? Are they almost invisible to medicine? Could cancer cells emit or give off chemical signals that make them hard to detect? $\endgroup$ – user128932 Aug 9 '14 at 3:51
  • $\begingroup$ Yes to all of those questions. They are especially tricky to the immune system. Usually what chemotherapy targets is rapidly dividing cells, which coincidentally also non-specifically targeting hair root folicles. $\endgroup$ – jwillis0720 Aug 14 '14 at 4:30
  • $\begingroup$ I heard on the radio some Biologist named Michel Fossil who wrote about 'Reversing Aging' had researched about increasing Tellomeres or 'resetting' them to a state similar to how they used to be actually improved cellular functions as if they were 'younger'. Could improving the Tellomere 'length' or functioning in a cancer cell make the apoptosis mechanisms in the cell 'turn back on' or start functioning as 'they' used to before the cell became cancerous? $\endgroup$ – user128932 Sep 6 '14 at 3:05
  • $\begingroup$ Do cancer cells have telomeres and would they be 'extra durable' ( as a cancer cell keeps functioning indefinitely)? $\endgroup$ – user128932 Sep 26 '14 at 5:27

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.