Fasting can help our nerves to regenerate.
Now a research team from Tel Aviv University has removed glioblastoma, a nasty type of brain tumour, by starving it. Literally.
With no known effective treatment, the team investigated what helped the tumour to survive and grow. They discovered that so-called astrocytes in its vicinity played a key role.
These brain cells instruct the immune system to protect, rather than destroy, the tumour.
At the same time they supply the glioblastoma cells with cholesterol, providing the tumour with the necessary energy to grow.
When the astrocytes were removed, however, neither of these processes occurred, and the tumour died.