Physical exercise reduces liver cancer risk. The latest study in mice links physical activity to the prevention of liver cancer and explains why.
The disease is the fastest-growing cause of cancer death in the United States, according to the American Cancer Society (ACS). The organization also notes that every year, 800,000 people globally receive a liver cancer diagnosis and the disease kills about 700,000 people each year.
Now, new research in mice found that physical workout prevents the development of liver cancer. The study results are published in the Journal of Hepatology.
Experts predict that liver cancer will affect 42,810 people in the U.S. and kill 30,160 in 2020. However, according to the World Health Organization, Mongolia has the world’s highest rate of liver cancer, followed by Egypt and Gambia.
Hepatocellular carcinoma is the most common type of primary liver cancer. The condition commonly occurs in people with liver disease and chronic hepatitis B and C.
During the experiment, one group of mice ran as far as 40 kilometers per week on an exercise wheel, while the other group didn’t perform any physical activity. At the end of the research, the inactive mice developed liver cancer.
“Some population data suggest that persons who exercise regularly are less likely to develop liver cancer, but studies addressing whether this has a real biological basis and, if so, identifying the molecular mechanism that produces such a protective effect are few, and the findings have been inconclusive,” the lead investigator of the study Geoffrey C. Farrell said