Navigation Links
Methadone Kills Resistant Leukemia Cells
Date:8/1/2008

Low doses of drug used to treat opioid addiction worked without toxic effects, study finds

FRIDAY, Aug. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Methadone, a drug used to break addiction to heroin and other opioid drugs, appears to be a potent killer of leukemia cells, a new study finds.

"Methadone kills sensitive leukemia cells and also breaks treatment resistance, but without any toxic effects on non-leukemic blood cells," study senior author Claudia Friesen, of the Institute of Legal Medicine at the University Ulm in Germany, said in a news release issued by the American Association for Cancer Research. "We find this very exciting, because once conventional treatments have failed a patient, which occurs in old and also in young patients, they have no other options."

The findings were published in the Aug. 1 issue of Cancer Research.

Methadone blocks opioid receptors that exist on the surface of some cancer cells. In tests on leukemia cells in laboratory culture, methadone proved as effective as standard chemotherapies and radiation treatments against non-resistant leukemia cells. Methadone also effectively killed leukemia that was resistant to multiple chemotherapies and to radiation.

Unlike some treatments, though, non-leukemic peripheral blood lymphocytes still survived after methadone treatment.

Researchers found methadone activates the mitochondrial pathway within leukemia cells, which switches on enzymes called caspases. These prompt a cell into apoptosis, or programmed cell death. Chemotherapy drugs use the same approach, but methadone activated caspases in sensitive leukemia cells, and also reversed deficient activation of caspases in resistant leukemia cells.

While the doses of methadone used to kill leukemia cells in this study were greater than those used to treat opioid addiction, the researchers have since found a lower daily dose of methadone to achieve the same effect.

While methadone can become addictive, the habit is much easier to break than being hooked on true opioids, Friesen said.

"Addiction shouldn't be an unsolvable problem if methadone is ever used as an anti-cancer therapy," she said.

Studies using methadone in animal models of human leukemia are beginning, Friesen said, and others will look into whether the agent is also effective against other cancers. Another research group has already found methadone induces cell death in human lung cancer cell lines.

More information

The American Cancer Society has more about leukemia.



-- Kevin McKeever



SOURCE: American Association for Cancer Research, news release, Aug. 1, 2008


'/>"/>
Copyright©2008 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Methadone and systematic follow-up: the best solution for managing chronic pain
2. Coronary Disease Dulls Cognitive Skills
3. Stanford researchers find molecule that kills kidney cancer cells
4. California Drug Rehab Program Launches New Life Skills Classes to Young Adults as Substance Abuse Treatment
5. Poor spellers with good phonetic skills are more often right-handed
6. American Heart Association Survey Reveals Americans Lack Confidence in Lifesaving Skills for Common Cardiac Emergency
7. Traditional herbal medicine kills pancreatic cancer cells, Jefferson researchers report
8. New Therapy Kills Human Leukemia Cells in Mice
9. Multiple Sclerosis Affects Childrens Cognitive Skills
10. Study by Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi Confirms Training With Vision Software Enhances Hitting Skills
11. Pot Plus Alcohol Kills Young Rats Brain Cells
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... Rock, AR (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2017 ... ... firm with locations throughout Arkansas that offers insurance and financial preparation services, is ... benefit the Rock City Rescue organization. , Rock City Rescue is a locally ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... , ... October 13, 2017 , ... While it’s often ... a problem. Fortunately, an inventor from Austin, Texas, has identified a solution. , She ... in darkness or restricted lighting. As such, it eliminates the need to turn on ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... certification process to promote standards of excellence for the field of eating disorders, ... March 22 – 25, 2018 in Orlando, Florida at the Omni Resort at ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... alumni Hannah Randall, PharmD ‘17, and Jennifer Huggins, PharmD ’17, along with ... for the primary prevention of cardiovascular diseases during the 15th Annual Women’s ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Apple Rehab Shelton Lakes , which specializes in the ... facility as part of a disaster drill on October 3rd. , Apple Rehab participated ... Emergency Manager, as well as the Connecticut Long Term Care Mutual Aid Plan ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/2/2017)... 2, 2017  Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE: ... the third quarter of 2017 on Tuesday, October 24, ... that day with the investment community and media to ... conference call will begin at 9 a.m. Eastern time. ... live webcast of the conference call through a link ...
(Date:10/2/2017)... Halo Labs announces the European launch of their new ... at MIBio 2017 in Cambridge, U.K on ... in biopharmaceutical samples with unprecedented speed and sensitivity while using far ... Membrane Imaging. ... particle analysis system ...
(Date:9/28/2017)... CHICAGO , Sept. 28, 2017 Hill-Rom ... quarter 2017 earnings conference call and webcast on Friday, ... 8:00 a.m. (EDT) and ending at approximately 8:30 a.m. ... to discussing the company,s 2017 financial performance and guidance ... growth opportunities, initiatives to enhance operational performance, and long-range ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: