Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Drug shrinks lung cancer tumors in mice

11.11.2009
A potential new drug for lung cancer has eliminated tumours in 50% of mice in a new study published today in the journal Cancer Research. In the animals, the drug also stopped lung cancer tumours from growing and becoming resistant to treatment.

The authors of the research, from Imperial College London, are now planning to take the drug into clinical trials, to establish whether it could offer hope to patients with an inoperable form of lung cancer.

One in five people with lung cancer have small cell lung cancer and only three per cent of these people are expected to survive for five years. With this form of lung cancer, tumours spread quickly so it is rarely possible to remove the tumours surgically. Because of this, small cell lung cancer is treated with chemotherapy, with or without additional radiotherapy. Initially, the treatment often appears to work, reducing the size of the tumours. However, the tumours usually grow back rapidly and then become resistant to further treatment.

The researchers behind today's study have identified a drug that, in some mice, was able to completely shrink tumours away. In the mouse models, it was also able to stop tumours from growing and it helped other forms of chemotherapy to work more effectively. If the drug proves successful in humans, the researchers hope that it could help patients with this kind of lung cancer to live longer.

In small cell lung cancer, tumours spread quickly because the tumour cells grow and divide faster than normal cells. Previous research carried out by the Imperial team showed that these tumour cells proliferate faster because they are fuelled by a growth hormone called FGF-2. This growth hormone also triggers a survival mechanism in the tumour cells that makes them become resistant to chemotherapy.

In today's study, the researchers looked at the effect of a drug called PD173074, which blocks the receptor that FGF-2 uses to attach to the tumour cells. The drug stopped cancer cells from proliferating and from becoming resistant to treatment in 'test-tube' laboratory models. In one animal model of small cell lung cancer, the drug eliminated tumours in 50% of mice and in a second, similar mouse model, the drug enhanced the effect of standard chemotherapy.

Professor Michael Seckl, corresponding author of the study who heads the Section of Molecular Oncology and Lung Cancer Research at Imperial College London, said: "Lung cancer is the most common cancer killer in the world and over 100 people in the UK are diagnosed with the disease every day. Around one in five of those people will have small cell lung cancer. Although it responds to chemotherapy initially, the tumours soon become resistant to treatment and sadly nearly all people with the disease do not survive.

"We urgently need to develop new treatments for this disease. Our new research in mice suggests that it may be possible to develop the drug PD173074 into a new targeted therapy for small cell lung cancer. We hope to take this drug, or a similar drug that also stops FGF-2 from working, into clinical trials next year to see if it is a successful treatment for lung cancer in humans. An added bonus of this drug is that it could be taken orally, which would make it less invasive than some other forms of cancer therapy," added Professor Seckl.

The researchers first studied the effect of PD173074 in the lab, on cells taken from human tumours. The drug stopped cells from proliferating and prevented FGF-2 from triggering their survival mechanism, so the cells could be killed with standard chemotherapy agents. The effect of the drug was dose-dependent, so the more drug the researchers added to the cells, the less the cells proliferated.

The researchers then studied PD173074 in mice using two different types of human small cell lung cancer tumours. They tested the drug on its own and alongside the standard chemotherapy agent cisplatin, which is frequently used to treat patients with the disease. In the first mouse model, PD173074 given on its own killed off tumours in 50 per cent of the mice and these mice remained disease-free for at least one year. In the second mouse model, both PD173074 and cisplatin alone slowed down tumour growth. When the drugs were combined, they slowed down tumour growth significantly faster than either drug on its own.

The researchers also used PET scanning to show that the drug reduced DNA synthesis in the tumours, which indicates that the drug was preventing cell proliferation. The researchers also found that the rate of cell death, or apoptosis, in the tumours increased after the drug was given to the mice.

PD173074 was developed in 1998 to stop blood vessels from forming around tumours. Today's research is the first to show this drug has a therapeutic effect on tumours in mice.

The research was funded by the Cancer Treatment and Research Trust, Cancer Research UK and the UK Department of Health.

Lucy Goodchild | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.imperial.ac.uk

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Researchers release the brakes on the immune system
18.10.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

nachricht Norovirus evades immune system by hiding out in rare gut cells
12.10.2017 | University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Neutron star merger directly observed for the first time

University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event

On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Terahertz spectroscopy goes nano

20.10.2017 | Information Technology

Strange but true: Turning a material upside down can sometimes make it softer

20.10.2017 | Materials Sciences

NRL clarifies valley polarization for electronic and optoelectronic technologies

20.10.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>