DOES AN ASPIRIN A DAY KEEP CANCER AWAY?
[Originally published on BioGPS's Gene-of-the-Week Series on May 5, 2014.]
With over 100 billion tablets produced (and consumed) yearly, aspirin has come a long way from its humble beginnings as the active ingredient in willow bark—a medicinal remedy used since ancient times, by the likes of Hippocrates and Pliny the Elder. Since its first patented formulation in 1897, aspirin has been heralded as a Wonder Drug, has provided the foundation for Nobel Prize-winning research, and has even played a part in a WWI conspiracy involving Thomas Edison!
More recently, aspirin has re-entered the scientific spotlight as a potential preventive treatment against colorectal cancer. But first, to understand how aspirin might mediate this effect, there’s another key biological component to introduce--PTGS2.