Volume 90 Issue 17 | p. 32 | Concentrates
Issue Date: April 23, 2012

Another Aspirin Connection

High doses of drug’s breakdown product, salicylate, activate a major cellular energy sensor
Department: Science & Technology
News Channels: Biological SCENE
Keywords: aspirin, salicylic acid, AMPK, cancer, diabetes, metformin, kinases

The story of aspirin just got a new wrinkle. Scientists report that high doses of salicylate, which is both a breakdown product of aspirin and the pain-relieving willow bark component that spurred aspirin’s development, activate the energy sensor adenosine mono­phosphate-activated protein kinase, or AMPK (Science, DOI: 10.1126/science.1215327). Aspirin and salicylate block pain-mediating cyclooxygenase enzymes, but research in mice suggests those enzymes don’t underlie all the . . .

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