Investigating the Varied Uses and Opportunities of Dichloroacetic Acid

Dichloroacetic acid, sometimes called bichloroacetic acid, is made up of CHCl2 (BCA). It is similar to acetic acid, but instead of having two hydrogen atoms substituting the two methyl group hydrogens, it has two chlorine atoms. This makes it useful for many different purposes. Furthermore, there is ongoing research and study to determine whether dichloroacetates could be used as a form of medicine due to its ability of suppressing pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase.
Studies on animal and laboratory specimens suggest that DCA may be able to slow down the progression of certain types of cancer, however, there is not currently enough evidence to suggest using it for cancer treatment. This acid belongs to a class of halogenated organic molecules which produce dichloroacetate ions when exposed to water. It has a significant pKa of 1.35, and it must be noted that inhaling it can cause hazardous damage to the mucous membranes and airways of the respiratory system.
Results have shown that Asparagopsis taxiformis seaweed contains a very small amount of dichloroacetic acid (DCA). This drug-like substance is produced from the process of chlorination of drinking water, as well as a by-product of the break down of chlorine-based medicines and materials. The agent is formed when trichloroacetic acid is diminished, and also through the mix of chloral hydrate, calcium carbonate, sodium cyanide, water, and the addition of hydrochloric acid. Additionally, an alternate process includes the combination of hypochlorous acid with acetylene to make DCA. In the laboratory, DCA and TCA are customarily used to switch macromolecules (including proteins) from a liquid to a solid state.
The efficacy of treatment via local inhalation of chemicals is supported by the utilization of DCA and TCA for both therapeutic objectives like genital wart chemoablation and aesthetic procedures like chemical peels and tattoo elimination. Furthermore, these compounds can be used to pinpoint and eradicate unharmed cells.
Although it was seen to be non-threatening by a study conducted on randomize participants, DCA failed to produce beneficial results when tested on 15 newborns struggling with congenital lactic acidosis. Unfortunately, the drug yielded undesirable neurological effects while not having any apparent benefit, resulting in the need to end the trial prematurely. With regard to cancer, DCA lowered lactic acid levels in afflicted adults, yet there was no clear improvement a patient’s overall health, nor did it lead to an extended lifespan.
As a result, numerous experiments showcasing a direct comparison have shown DCA is not effective for this particular case, in spite of some initial studies and laboratory experiments giving the impression it could help with lactic acidosis. In addition, the toxicity levels of the medicine heightened to a point where people could not keep taking it for trial use without being in danger.
In 2007, Evangelos Michelakis and his team from the University of Alberta uncovered that administering sodium dichloroacetate (the sodium version of dichloroacetic acid) had lessened tumor growth in rats and annihilated cancer cells in laboratory tests. Subsequently, an article published by New Scientist gathered a lot of attention from readers by introducing an effective and harmless remedy that is effective against many types of cancers.
The following editorial in the study emphasized that without the legal protection of patenting, there is no motivation for pharmaceutical companies to make it available as a cancer treatment. A subsequent article in the same journal looked into potential negative side effects, such as nerve damage. The United States forbids granting permission to any chemicals that are marketed as cancer treatments without first gaining approval from the Federal Drug Administration.
In 2012, the American Cancer Society noted that there was not enough proof to support the use of DCA in cancer therapy. Medical professionals suggest that extreme care should be taken before utilizing DCA and it should not be used without being part of a scientifically supervised trial.
If you are interested in buying the chemical, you may come across some challenges. A sham artist was recently given a prison sentence lasting 33 months after he misled cancer sufferers by contending that the white powder he offered had the drug DCA, but it ended up just being plain starch.
Even though only a few people with glioblastoma were included in the study examining the utilization of DCA to those alive, the research was not meant to decide how effective it was for the illness. The purpose of the study was to determine if a certain dosage could be taken with no damaging side effects, such as neuropathy.
The five individuals partaking in the research were all already undergoing other treatment methods. Results from laboratory and animal testing indicated that DCA might be capable of eliminating glioblastoma from the body by compelling the altered mitochondria to depolarize, causing the cancerous cells to destroy themselves. Experiments ran with neuroblastomas, which have a flawed mitochondria arrangement, revealed that DCA could be effective against indestructible malignant cells.
In 2016, a case report examined the use of DCA as a method of dealing with cancers that affect the central nervous system. Two years later a study revealed that DCA was able to prompt tumor cells to switch from glycolysis to mitochondrial OXPHOS (the Warburg effect) and increase their levels of oxidative stress. This enhanced response was not seen with ordinary cells.
Neuropathy was the cause of certain DCA clinical studies being discontinued, but in 2008 an article published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology found that this wasn’t the case in other DCA trials. However, the precise manner in which DCA brings about neuropathy is still uncertain.
Research done on neurons grown in a lab has revealed how DCA can lead to neuropathic adverse effects. These studies found that DCA has a dose- and time-dependent removal of the layer around the nerve cells that can be somewhat remedied when the drug is no longer being taken. However, an assessment in 2008 of the same data showed an ailment that impacts the axons of sensory neurons and is length-dependent, as opposed to demyelination. The research of Kaufman et al, published in 2006, backs up the conclusions.
As per DCA Guide – Studies have been conducted to determine if DCA could be a beneficial treatment for those with prolonged heart failure caused by blocked arteries. Additionally, DCA has the benefit of increasing NADH levels and therefore accelerating metabolism, though this could be depleted when sufficient oxygen is present.

DCA for cancer treatment

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