1 in Molecular Cancer Therapeutics, a publication of the American Association for Cancer Research, and they continue to study the mechanisms behind the molecules apparent potencies. In its natural form, the curcumin molecule is composed of two ring structures linked by a chain of seven carbon atoms. The active ring structures of GO-Y030 and GO-Y031, however, are linked by a shorter, five-carbon chain, which Shibata says might for reasons still under investigation account for their enhanced potency.
Like curcumin, the researchers believe the new analogues have clinical potential that extends beyond colorectal cancer. In addition to colorectal cancer, the catenin-degrading abilities of these molecules could apply to other forms of cancer, such as gastric cancer, said Shibata. Like curcumin, these analogues also down-regulate a number of gene products, such as NF-kappa B, ErbB2, K-ras, that are also implicated in breast, pancreas and lung cancers among other diseases.
In addition to their chemopreventative abilities, these molecules might also form the basis of a potent chemotherapy, either alone or in combination with other modes of therapy, said Shibata.
According to Shibata, the next step for the researchers is to further examine the drug delivery mechanisms, toxicology and pharmacokinetics of these analogues, before extending the research to clinical trials. Their studies were funded by the Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science and the Miyagi Health Service Association.
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