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Cellular target may prove useful in treating deadly brain tumors
Date:4/3/2009

pies to treat glioblastomas are directed toward blocking the activity of another cellular receptor called epithelial growth factor receptor (EGFR). A recent clinical trial using an EGFR inhibitor found that patients whose tumors expressed high levels of phosphorylated or chemically altered Akt did not respond to treatment, Kwatra said.

"This underscores the importance of discovering the origin of active Akt in glioblastomas," he said. "We propose that the elevated levels of phosphorylated Akt may come from active forms of NK1R, and it's possible that a better response might be obtained by simultaneously blocking EGFR and NK1R."

Future studies may examine the role of a NK1R inhibitor in glioblastoma patients, perhaps as a corollary to treatment with an EGFR blocker such as erlotinib, which is currently being studied in clinical trials.

"The FDA has already approved a drug for combating chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting that happens to be an NK1R inhibitor, so that might be a possibility for study in conjunction with erlotinib," Kwatra said.


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Contact: Lauren Shaftel Williams
lauren.shaftel@duke.edu
919-684-4966
Duke University Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

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