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Discovery blocks cancer drug's toxic side effect
Date:11/4/2010

ents start taking CPT-11 allows for improvement in the drugs anti-tumor effect in patients with cancer.

The research was funded by the National Institutes of Health, the Golden Leaf Foundation and the State of North Carolina.

Other study co-authors were graduate students Bret D. Wallace and Jillian Orans, and postdoctoral fellow Kimberly T. Lane, Ph.D., all from the UNC chemistry department; Ja Seol Koo, M.D., and Christian Jobin, Ph.D., from the medicine department in the UNC School of Medicine; Hongwei Wang, Ph.D. and Madhukumar Venkatesh, Ph.D., from the departments of medicine, oncology and genetics at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine; and John E. Scott, Ph.D., and Li-An Yeh, Ph.D., with the Biomanufacturing Research Institute and Technology Enterprise program at N.C. Central University.

Footnote: Big disease, small world

Redinbo, the studys lead author, was motivated to tackle the problem of curbing CPT-11s side effects after seeing the treatments debilitating impact on a colleague, Lisa Benkowski, who contracted colon cancer and subsequently died in 2003.

For a long time, he did not share this with the members of his research team because he did not want to risk putting undue pressure on them. But as their work progressed and appeared to be proving successful, he told them and found out that the graduate student performing the central studies, Bret Wallace (the papers first author), had exactly the same experience: a family friend, Stacey Micoli, was diagnosed with cancer in 2006, treated with the same drug, suffered the same way and died last year.

Both women are cited in the acknowledgements section of the study.

Its remarkable to me that we both had personal reasons to find a way to improve CPT-11 tolerance, Redinbo said. We only talked about it well into the project, when I shared my story about Lisa, and Bret followed with his about Stacey.

This paper is a t
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Contact: Dianne Shaw
dgs@med.unc.edu
919-966-5905
University of North Carolina School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert

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