Navigation Links
Modern targeted drug plus old malaria pill serve a 1-2 punch in advanced cancer patients
Date:4/5/2011

ORLANDO -- Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine may have found a way to turn an adaptive cellular response into a liability for cancer cells. When normal cells are starved for food, they chew up existing proteins and membranes to stay alive. Cancer cells have corrupted that process, called autophagy, using it to survive when they run out of nutrients and to evade death after damage from chemotherapy and other sources. When the Penn investigators treated a group of patients with several different types of advanced cancers with temsirolimus, a molecularly targeted cancer drug that blocks nutrient uptake, plus hydroxychloroquine, an anti-malarial drug that inhibits autophagy, they saw that tumors stopped growing in two-thirds of the patients.

Amaravadi's team will present the data at the American Association for Cancer Research 102nd Annual Meeting 2011 in Orlando on Tuesday, April 5. (Abstract #4500)

"The results are very encouraging -- striking, even" says senior author Ravi Amaravadi, MD, an assistant professor of Medicine at Penn's Abramson Cancer Center. "Temsirolimus by itself has little effect in this patient population. Tumors laugh at it, with response percentages of just zero to 5 percent. But by combining it with hydroxychloroquine, we found that 14 out of 21 patients had stable disease after treatment, including five out of six melanoma patients."

In addition to melanoma, patients involved in the study also had colorectal, head and neck, breast, gastro-esophageal, prostate, pancreatic, lung and adrenal cancers. Not only did patients show substantial rates of disease stabilization with the treatment combination, but the researchers report that side effects observed were relatively limited; most commonly mouth sores, weight loss, nausea, and fatigue. Two patients developed infections when the large tumors they had at the start of the trial caved in on themselves as treatment killed off the internal cancer cells, but both patients responded to antibiotics and were able to remain on the study regimen.

Amaravadi's group was able to see evidence of autophagy inhibition in peripheral blood cells in patients treated with the combination. And the inhibition increased with increasing doses of hydroxychloroquine, suggesting that the drug is working as they hypothesized it would.

More serious side effects, including low blood cell counts, in a previous phase I trial that combined hydroxychloroquine with chemotherapy and radiation. "That was unexpected and shows that hydroxychloroquine is an experimental drug, even though it has been approved for other treatments for many years," he says. "We didn't see that problem in this trial, so our findings show that what you combine it with is critical and some combinations will be less tolerable."

The researchers note that the relatively limited side effect profile of the novel temsirolimus-hydroxychloroquine combination suggests researchers may be able to layer other therapies on top of it, making the combination an even more powerful treatment.

Given the large proportion of melanoma patients who benefited from this combination in the initial cohort of patients, the investigators are currently enrolling an additional 12 patients in an expansion cohort at the 1200 mg dose of hydroxychloroquine. They are also hopeful that the drug combination will also be useful in patients with head and neck and breast cancers.


'/>"/>

Contact: Holly Auer
holly.auer@uphs.upenn.edu
215-200-2313
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Study shows that modern surgery for scoliosis has good long-term outcomes
2. Learning from old bones to treat modern back pain
3. Famed neurosurgeons century-old notes reveal modern style admission of medical error
4. Sows ears and silk purses: Packing more flavor into modern pork
5. The brains journey from early Internet to modern-day fiber optics -- all in 1 lifetime
6. Action of modern drug demonstrates how 2 ancient human systems interact
7. The New 2010 Modernized Medicare Supplement Plans: Positive Changes in the Midst of Health Care Reform
8. Denver Plastic Surgeon Deploys Sophisticated Lasers in Modern Beauty, Anti-aging Treatments
9. Modern medicine conquers witchcraft
10. Bloomberg School of Public Health awarded $15 million for laboratory renovation and modernization
11. iVillage Prescribes New Health Site for the Modern Woman
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/24/2017)... ... May 24, 2017 , ... Altec Products, Inc., a leader in ... a one-day technology conference in San Diego, CA. , At nVerge 2017, Altec ... fully utilize and enhance their Sage ERP solutions by providing improved visibility and control ...
(Date:5/24/2017)... DC (PRWEB) , ... May 24, 2017 , ... ... Center for Global Policy Solutions is vehemently opposed to Donald Trump’s budget, “A ... formula for despair that inspires fear, demonizes the poor, marginalizes underserved populations, undermines ...
(Date:5/24/2017)... ... May 24, 2017 , ... Accordant Technology, a ... portfolio. ExtraHop delivers an analytics-first approach, layered with machine learning, that provides real-time ... datacenter to the cloud to the edge. Through the new partnership, customers get ...
(Date:5/24/2017)... ... May 24, 2017 , ... Fiberstar, ... solutions for the food and beverage industry offers Citri-Fi®, a natural citrus fiber, ... the purchasing decision process. As a result, labels need to deliver simple, transparent ...
(Date:5/23/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... May 23, 2017 , ... Allegheny ... to open The Alexis Joy D’Achille Center for Women’s Behavioral Health at West ... available in western Pennsylvania for women suffering from pregnancy-related depression. Construction of the ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/8/2017)... 2017  Diplomat Pharmacy, Inc. (NYSE: DPLO)., has completed ... a health care service center company based in ... in relationship management programs for leading pharmaceutical manufacturers and ... WRB will join Envoy Health Management, LLC ... manufacturers, biotech firms, and other service companies. Together, WRB ...
(Date:5/4/2017)... May 4, 2017  A recent study published ... Ultraviolet-C light as a means of disinfection ... to reduce bioburden on anesthesia workstations. In the ... high-touch, complex medical equipment surfaces contaminated with three ... "This study further validates the body of ...
(Date:5/4/2017)... 2017   BioLife Solutions , Inc. (NASDAQ: ... of proprietary clinical grade hypothermic storage and ... today announced that the Company,s first quarter 2017 financial ... May 11, 2017, and that the Company will host ... PT that afternoon. Management will provide an overview of ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: