Recently in a petri dish study, researchers found Vitamin D may help reduce ovarian cancer’s ability to spread to other organs. Now, researchers believe vitamin D could be a key in preventing this lethal cancer. According to researchers at Nagoya University Graduate School of Medicine in Japan, Vitamin D stopped a key transformation in the metastasis of cancer.

Interestingly, Vitamin D also reversed a process by which ovarian cancer cells use to spread into different organs.

According to Apollo Hospital, Ovarian cancer is a type of cancer that begins in the female organs that produce eggs (ovaries). Ovarian cancer often goes undetected until it has spread within the pelvis and stomach. At this late stage, ovarian cancer is more difficult to treat and can be fatal.

Estimates suggest that Ovarian cancer has one of the highest death rates of all cancers. The major reason for this is that cancer turns the body’s defense mechanism against itself.

Vitamin D Could Help Protect Women Against and Even Reverse Ovarian Cancer — Study

Ovarian cancer frequently undergoes a process called peritoneal metastasis. In this process, cancer cells detach from their primary site in the ovary and move to a secondary site such as the peritoneal wall or diaphragm.

The peritoneum defends against this process using a barrier consisting of mesothelial cells. Mesothelial cells form a layer of specialized cells that line the body’s serous cavities and internal organs. The primary function of this layer is to provide a slippery, non-adhesive, and protective surface which means this layer is able to prevent the adhesion of cancer cells and limit spreading.

However, ovarian cancer cells get around this layer by converting the protective mesothelial cells into cancer-associated mesothelial cells. After that, the environment becomes supportive for metastasis to occur, assisting the spread of cancer around the body.

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For this reason, doctors call ovarian cancer ‘a silent killer’ because it causes few distinct symptoms until the cancer is advanced.

Now researchers found that vitamin D not only reversed this process but also restored the cancer-associated mesothelial cells to their actual state. According to researchers, Vitamin D strengthened the barrier effect and defense capacity of mesothelial cells and reduced the further spreading rate of cancer.

 vitamin d
Vitamin D capsules/Getty Images

“We showed the potential of vitamin D for normalizing cancer-associated mesothelial cells, which is the first study of this kind,” said Dr. Kazuhisa Kitami, the first author of the study.

“This study’s most interesting point is that in situations where early detection of ovarian cancer is still extremely difficult, we showed that the peritoneal environment can be restored to its normal state where it prevents the adhesion and growth of cancer cells.”

Dr. Kitami continues: “The administration of Vitamin D helps normalize the peritoneal environment. This suggests that the combination of Vitamin D and conventional remedies can enhance their therapeutic efficacy for ovarian cancer. We think this helps prevent the adhesion of cancer cells to the peritoneum, which may make it possible to prevent the recurrence of ovarian cancer.”

So women should consume a high amount of Vitamin D supplements unless they spend time outside for work. Stay Healthy. Wishing you a healthy life.

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Journal reference:

Kitami, K., et al. (2022) Peritoneal restoration by repurposing vitamin D inhibits ovarian cancer dissemination via blockade of the TGF-β1/thrombospondin-1 axis. Matrix Biology.