Artesunate for Cancer Treatment

Artesunate is a compound that is derived from the wormwood
plant used in many therapies to detoxify and enhance bowel elimination. This
plant has been used in China and India and other botanically based healing
disciplines around the world  for
millennia to treat malaria and intestinal parasites Another name for Artesunate
is one form of ‘artimisinin’ or ‘artemesia’ designed for intravenous (IV) use.

Research at the University of Washington has shown that
artesunate selectively kills cancer cells and leaves normal cells unharmed.

Artesunate reacts with iron to form free radicals, which
then kill cells.  Since cancer cells require much more iron than normal
cells, they are quickly recognized and killed, hence they are much more
susceptible to the cytotoxic effects of artesunate than normal cells in part
because of the amount of iron and also because cancer cells lack the normal
antioxidant enzymes that normal cells have in abundance.

Furthermore, artesunate is approximately 100 times more
selective in killing cancer cells as opposed to normal cells and recent research
has shown that combining it with iron makes it 34,000 times more deadly to
cancer cells than normal cells.

Because they multiply much more rapidly than normal cells, cancer
cells need more iron in order to replicate their DNA.  In addition, cancer
cells have small portals on their surface (transferrin (protein bound iron)
receptors) in in much larger numbers than normal cells. Those receptors allow
for rapid transport into the cells.

Once inside the cell, the artesunate reacts with the iron, producing
highly reactive compounds called, “free radicals”.  The free radicals destroy
other molecules as well as the cell membrane, which  breaks it open and the cell dies.


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