The agent, OSU-HDAC42, belongs to a new class of drugs called histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors, compounds designed to reactivate genes that normally protect against cancer but are turned off by the cancer process.
The study, conducted by the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers who also developed the drug, showed that the agent kept mice with a precancerous condition from developing advanced prostate cancer.
Instead, the animals either remained at the precancerous stage, called prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia (PIN), or they developed benign enlargements of the prostate called adenomas. The main side effect of the treatment was a reversible shrinkage of the testicles.
Of the animals not given the drug, 74 percent developed advanced prostate cancer.
The findings are reported in the May 15 issue of the journal Cancer Research. Human testing of the compound is expected to begin early next year.
“This study shows that an agent with a specific molecular target can dramatically inhibit prostate cancer development in an aggressive model of the disease,” says coauthor Dr. Steven Clinton, director of the prostate and genitourinary oncology clinic at Ohio State’s James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute. “We hope to see this agent in clinical trials soon and ultimately used for prostate-cancer prevention or therapy.”
Furthermore, when the drug treatment was stopped after 24 weeks, two of the animals were followed for an additional 18 weeks. The animals developed adenomas but were alive after 42 weeks, well beyond their normal 32-week life span.
“The drug not only kept the animals cancer free, but also prolonged their life span,” says Ching-Shih Chen, who led the drug’s development and the new study at the Comprehensive Cancer Center. Chen is also professor of pharmacy and of internal medicine.
A veterinary pathologist on the study, first author Aaron Sargeant, graduate research associate in veterinary biosciences, was intrigued that adenomas occurred in the treated animals. “Adenomas are not commonly found to be part of prostate-cancer development in this system,” he says. “This drug appears to shift tumor progression from its usual aggressive course to a more benign direction.”
For this study, Chen, Sargeant, Clinton and their colleagues used a strain of transgenic mice that develops PIN at about six weeks of age, then progresses to advanced prostate cancer by 24 to 32 weeks.
The researchers added the drug to the diet of 23 of the cancer-prone mice beginning at six weeks of age, when the animals develop the precancerous condition, and continued the treatment for 18 weeks.
They then examined the animals. Of the treated mice, one showed signs of early stage cancer, but 12 still had only the precancerous condition and 10 had adenomas.
In contrast, 17 of 23 control animals developed advanced prostate cancer, two had early stage cancer, three had the precancerous condition and one an adenoma.
Experiments using a nontransgenic strain of the same mouse – they do not develop prostate cancer – showed that the degeneration of the testicles that accompanied the drug treatment was reversible when the drug treatment stops.
Chen noted that 186,320 cases of prostate cancer are expected this year, with 28,660 deaths from the disease. “Our findings are very exciting, considering that an agent capable of reducing prostate-cancer risk by only 10 percent could prevent 18,600 cases of the disease in the United States each year,” Chen says.
Darrell E. Ward | EurekAlert!
New study points the way to therapy for rare cancer that targets the young
22.11.2017 | Rockefeller University
Penn study identifies new malaria parasites in wild bonobos
21.11.2017 | University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
Heat from the friction of rocks caused by tidal forces could be the “engine” for the hydrothermal activity on Saturn's moon Enceladus. This presupposes that...
The WHO reports an estimated 429,000 malaria deaths each year. The disease mostly affects tropical and subtropical regions and in particular the African continent. The Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research ISC teamed up with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME and the Institute of Tropical Medicine at the University of Tübingen for a new test method to detect malaria parasites in blood. The idea of the research project “NanoFRET” is to develop a highly sensitive and reliable rapid diagnostic test so that patient treatment can begin as early as possible.
Malaria is caused by parasites transmitted by mosquito bite. The most dangerous form of malaria is malaria tropica. Left untreated, it is fatal in most cases....
The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.
Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...
Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.
That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...
Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.
During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....
15.11.2017 | Event News
15.11.2017 | Event News
30.10.2017 | Event News
23.11.2017 | Information Technology
23.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
23.11.2017 | Life Sciences