2-Deoxy-glucose (2 DG) is a form of sugar that has recently been studied as a way to treat breast cancer stem cells. Breast cancer comes from breast cancer stem cells that grow out of control and it is thought that 2 DG can treat breast cancer by targeting the cancer stem cells.
One research article (1) looked at 2 DG and the treatment of breast cancer. It found that, if the stem cells aren’t killed, the individual has a higher risk of developing breast cancer relapses. It noted that, by targeting the stem cells with 2 DG, the reoccurrence of breast cancer is less likely to happen.
It also noted that, when 2 DG was given in vitro, it killed off the stem cells leading to breast cancer. As this was an in vitro study, more studies need to be done on animals and humans with cancer to see if 2 DG could treat cancer recurrences in these types of subjects.
Source: 1.Ciavardelli D, et al. Breast cancer stem cells rely on fermentative glycolysis and are sensitive to 2-deoxyglucose treatment. Cell Death and Disease (2014) 5, e1336.
Dr. Adem Gunes