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News

Apoptotic and anti-angiogenic therapies have proven to work

American Association For Cancer Research (AACR) : 01 June, 2007  (Technical Article)
American researchers have discoverd that a combination of a drug that induces cell death (apoptosis) and imantanib (Glivec1) has returned an improved performance at proventing the growth of Ewing's sarcoma in mice than either therapy on its own.
Imantanib works by preventing the creation of new blood vessels to supply the growing tumour (antiangiogenesis) and the researchers believe that this is the first report of synergy between apoptosis and antiangiogenic therapy in pre-clinical work.

Professor Andrea Hayes-Jordan reported to the EORTC-NCI-AACR2 Symposium on Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics in Prague that treating sarcoma cells with imantanib inhibited a growth factor called PDGFR-beta. This had the effect of increasing the sensitivity of the cells to a drug called tumour necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand.

Prof. Hayes-Jordan, assistant professor of surgery and pediatrics at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, USA, said: 'When I treated the tumour cells with imantanib, the anti-angiogenic drug, the receptors for TRAIL, the apoptotic drug, increased, thus increasing the efficacy of TRAIL. This was supported by the mouse studies, which showed increased inhibition of pulmonary metastases and primary tumour growth when both were used simultaneously. These findings are important because, if it proves to be effective in humans, it would be well tolerated and have significantly fewer side effects than traditional cytotoxic therapy. Also, at present, we have no effective chemotherapy for pulmonary metastases, the only effective treatment is surgery, so this would give us another option.' Prof. Hayes-Jordan hopes to investigate the dual therapy in humans in a clinical trial within 12-18 months.
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