When adenomas appear in the colon, the same cells of the tissue produce a molecule that neutralizes its progression.
Adenomas, which are highly prevalent in the population, provide the substrate on which carcinomas develop.
Colon cancer development starts with the formation of benign tumours called adenomas. It is estimated that between 30% and 50% of people over 50 will develop one of these tumours. These adenomas or polyps are the pre-cancerous lesions that, once they accumulate further genetic mutations over many years, can progress to colon cancer. A team headed by scientists at the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona) and headed by the ICREA researcher Eduard Batlle has discovered that the colon has a safety mechanism to restrict the formation and growth of adenomas.