An Australian researcher has discovered a way to remove banana skin in the lab, and claim a cure for skin cancer.
The Australian researchers have discovered a new way to get the body to recognise that it is banana skin, and to stop it from re-appearing.
Dr David O’Connor of the University of Western Australia says the technique is much easier than conventional techniques, and is very similar to that used by the French.
He says it’s a combination of chemical and physical changes that remove the banana skin.
He believes the method can be used to treat skin cancers in people, and it’s been used in mice.
“The body recognises that there’s a lot of material going on in its body and we can remove it,” he said.
“And this is very interesting, because we’re now able to put it in a small, but effective way to help the body recognise that there is something else in the body.”
Dr O’Connors team tested the technique in mice, and found it could be used in humans.
“We’ve seen in mice that the treatment does seem to work really well,” he explained.
“So we think that we’ve found a really effective way of treating skin cancers that are not curable in humans, so we’ve just got to be very careful about this.”
Dr David says the process involves using a chemical called benzalkonium chloride, which has a high affinity for the skin’s natural barrier layer.
He said it’s likely that there are ways to apply the chemicals safely and effectively in the human body, and that this could be a step towards the development of an anti-cancer drug.
“What we want to do is to be able to use these chemicals safely in a way that doesn’t cause harm, and we want the body’s immune system to recognise this and stop it re-growing,” he added.
Dr O’s team said they’re not yet sure if the method works in humans as well.
But Dr O’Connell said it is an important first step.
“Bananas are one of the most commonly used fruits in the world,” he commented.
“It’s one of those foods that’s very, very, well known in people and the fact that we’re able to find a way of getting rid of that skin is very exciting.”
Dr Stephen Koss of the Australian Institute of Health and Medical Research said it was exciting news.
“This is a very exciting study, which shows a new and different approach that could be helpful for people with some types of skin cancer,” he told the ABC.
“There is a long way to go to make a cure, but we hope that we can use this to advance the science in this area.”