By Dr. Mercola
Mitochondria: you might not know what they are, but they are vital to your health. Rhonda Patrick, PhD is a biomedical scientist who has studied the interaction between mitochondrial metabolism, aberrant metabolism, and cancer.
She’s also done research on aging at the Salk Institute for Biological Sciences in La Jolla, California.
“I’ve had a variety of experiences doing research on aging, cancer, and metabolism,” she explains. “Now, currently, I’m in Oakland, California, where I’m doing my post-doctoral research, working with Dr. Bruce Ames…
The primary focus of the research is the role of nutrition in preventing age-related diseases like cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, and different inflammatory-related diseases like obesity and type 2 diabetes.
I’ve been doing a lot of research currently on nutrition, specifically what roles micronutrients play in biological processes; how inadequacies and certain micronutrients can lead to insidious types of damage that can accumulate over decades, [and how they] lead to things like cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.”
Part of her work involves the identification of early biomarkers of disease. For example, DNA damage is an early biomarker for cancer. She then tries to determine which micronutrients might help repair that DNA damage.
She’s also investigated mitochondrial function and metabolism, which is one of my own most recent passions. Dr. Lee Know’s book, “Life – The Epic Story of Our Mitochondria”, is a really good primer if you want to learn more about this topic after listening to this interview.
Your mitochondria have enormous potential to influence your health, specifically cancer, and I’m starting to believe that optimizing mitochondrial metabolism may in fact be at the core of effective cancer treatment.
The Importance of Optimizing Mitochondrial Metabolism
Mitochondria are tiny organelles, originally thought to be derived from bacteria. Red blood cells and skin cells have very little to none,