- By Laurel J. Kelly
In the Loop: How fruit flies are helping cancer patients
Fruit flies are an all too common annoyance, but they're also a powerful new tool for researchers at Mayo Clinic in their quest to make chemotherapy treatments easier on cancer patients.
It happens to the best of us. We let a piece of fruit get a little too ripe on the kitchen counter and before we know it we're swatting at swarms of hungry fruit flies. And they're not just gnawing away at the fermenting fruit. They're laying hundreds of microscopic eggs throughout our homes to ensure the cycle continues.
While fruit flies may be an all too common annoyance, they're also a powerful new tool in the quest to make chemotherapy treatments easier on cancer patients. More specifically, the 30 to 40 percent who suffer "enduring pain in the hands and feet," or peripheral neuropathy, in the wake of chemo treatments, reports Mayo Clinic's Research magazine, Discovery's Edge.
This story originally appeared on the In the Loop blog.