Moncada, Prince of Asturias award, says that 30% of cancers can be prevented

The scientist Salvador Moncada, Prince of Asturias Award for Technical and Scientific Research, said today to EFE that “possibly more than 30% of cancers are preventable”, with changes to the style of life and the identification of early markers of the disease.

The scientific honduran, who has closed in Valencia congress of the Spanish Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, has also alerted that it is “historic mistake” that Spain invests in science to below 1% of GDP. “The most important things in cancer is that it is increasingly working, and it’s going to work in the future, in prevention and in early diagnosis”, has highlighted the professor, who has highlighted that the earlier cancer is detected, the easier it is to treat, and radiation and surgery are “very effective”. “The more we work in the population and preventive medicine, early diagnosis, we will have less patients in chronic treatment of cancer, which are also going to have an economic benefit in the long term, because you can’t have national health systems paying for the huge number of people with advanced cancer who are in treatment” he said.

For the professor, the cancer vaccine “it is a thing much more distant, if it can be done”, as it is a disease that “adaptation darwinian of the cells, and there is a huge amount of targets possible”, so the “the prospect of a vaccine is further away” other actions.

So, he explained, is investigating the development of new drugs that attack specific targets; the activation of the immune system of the cancer patient so that the person can itself attack and destroy it, or developments in radiation therapy for a radiation of very tumor-specific.

Moncada has exposed the recent studies that have been conducted on the metabolism of the cells that proliferate, with the idea that if you understand the mechanism of this proliferation may find differences between normal cells and cancer, which proliferate much.

The professor has indicated that, although there are already several years of study in this matter, and for the moment have not found a “qualitative difference” that allows to think about the possibility of an inhibition of any enzyme in the cancer cell, for example, that you stop your metabolism and not the normal cell.

in Addition, has warned that the situation of science in Spain is “very disturbing,” as “it invests very little in R & D” in comparison with other developed countries, which allocate between 2.5% and 3% of the GDP to this area, while in Spain, after cuts, “it has come down from 1%”, which means “a strangulation of the system of science,”. In his view, “problem” is that the budget of science is “vulnerable” when you do not have “strategic importance” for the State, so that when a crisis emerges, the first budget that suffers is the R & D. “Not to invest in science, and do not develop the scientific basis and mechanisms of transfer of technology is a historic mistake”, has alerted the professor, to whom Spain “not only should invest more”, but to review all the processes required to speed up the transfer of technology.