A new study looks at the “obesity paradox” and argues that while obesity is a risk that can lead to cancer, it can also improve patients’ responseto therapy in some cases. The new study comes from Flinders University. The scientists studied clinical trials involving immunotherapy treatments for non-small cell lung cancer, known as atezolizumab. They also found that patients with a higher body mass index (BMI) were more responsive to the drug.
Overweight and obesity due to inflammation caused by it are considered a cancer risk. The link between excess body fat and cancer is a powerful link that stimulates public health campaigns to advise the public about the risks. However, in some cases of cancer with a high BMI, the outcome of treatment options may be improved.
The new study by Flinders University found that in four different clinical trials, the mortality rate of patients with a higher BMI and atezolizumab was “significantly reduced.” In this case, a high BMI refers to a BMI of more than 25 kg / m2.
A total of 1,434 people participated in the study, of whom 49% were classified as normal weight, the remaining 34% were overweight and 7% were obese. Dr. Ganessan Kichenadasse, lead researcher on the study, explained:
We need further research into the possible link between BMI and associated inflammation, which may help to understand the mechanisms behind this paradoxical response to this form of cancer treatment… Our study provides new evidence to support the hypothesis that high BMI and obesity may be related to the response to immunotherapy.
Of course, there is still a link between cancer risk and obesity. Excess fat in the body is a known health risk and can be a catalyst for many serious chronic health conditions, including high blood pressure, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, autoimmune diseases, high cholesterol and triglycerides. Public health groups advocate weight loss for obese people to help protect their own long-term health.