Just another WordPress weblog
RSS icon Email icon Home icon
  • Scientists Identify New Target for Cancer Therapies

    Posted on April 26th, 2012 Patricia No comments

    A drug that interrupts the uncontrolled growth of cancer cells reduced colon tumor development by up to 80% when tested in mice, report US researchers.

    The compound, called PD 184352, “blocked the growth of colon tumors implanted into mice without otherwise affecting the mice,” said study lead author Dr. Judith Sebolt-Leopold, an investigator at Parke-Davis Pharmaceutical Research in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The findings are published in the July issue of the journal Nature Medicine.

    PD 184352 belong to a family of chemicals called ‘MEK inhibitors.’ In an interview with Reuters Health, Sebolt-Leopold described MEK1 as an enzyme important to the ‘pathway’ of chemical signaling that drives uncontrolled growth, a characteristic feature of cancer cells. For years, she noted, scientists involved in the fight against cancer “have been trying to selectively interfere with this pathway to specifically block the ability of tumor cells to grow.”

    Her team of researchers suspected that PD 184352 might block MEK1 activity, ‘short-circuiting’ the mechanisms behind uncontrolled cell growth. After promising results in the laboratory, the investigators tested the compound in mice implanted with colon cancer cells.

    Closer investigation suggests that PD 184352 reduces both the growth and migration of cancer cells. Most cancer cells display the ability to metastasize, or ‘scatter’ outside the immediate range of the tumor, increasing the risk of cancer recurrence following surgery. However, according to the investigators, “the MEK inhibitor blocked the ability of the cells to scatter.”

    The effectiveness of MEK inhibitors may not be limited to colon cancers. “Preliminary experiments carried out in vitro with lung and pancreatic tumors also showed sensitivity to this agent,” Sebolt-Leopold said.

    Biopsy tests that assessed the vulnerability of individual cancers to MEK inhibitors could raise the odds of treatment success, according to the researcher. Ideally, such tests would “determine those patients who would most likely derive benefit from treatment with a MEK inhibitor,” the Michigan researcher explained.

    Sebolt-Leopold calls the study findings “exciting.” She said research into the safety of PD 184352 and other MEK inhibitors continues, in preparation for future clinical trials.

    Ordering discount prescription drugs from an internet pharmacy not only saves money, time but also present you the ease and convenience of obtaining remedies from home.

    Comments are closed.