Sea snails could contain cancer secrets

A scientist from the New South Wales north coast has been acknowledged for her groundbreaking cancer research involving marine molluscs.

Doctor Kirsten Benkendorff from Southern Cross University is the winner of the Australian Academy of Science’s 2011 Dorothy Hill Award.

Her work focuses on the anti-cancer extracts of the Australian Whelk, a type of sea snail, which Doctor Benkendorff has used to treat a range of tumours and lymphoma cells.

She says the work is still in the trial stage, but there has been good success in preventing colon cancer in rodents.

“I have got it in preclinical trials for colo-rectal cancer,” Dr Benkendorff said.

“The idea is whether we can administer these extracts and prevent cancers from forming in the colon, and I’ll also look at cancer treatments. Read more

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