Navigation Links
Novel approach to treating breast cancer shows great promise
Date:12/7/2011

MAYWOOD, Il. -- In a novel therapeutic approach to treating breast cancer, Loyola University Medical Center researchers are reporting positive results from a clinical trial of a drug that targets tumor stem cells.

Existing cancer drugs are effective in killing mature cancer cells. But a handful of cancer stem cells are resistant to such drugs. They survive and go on to develop into new tumor cells.

A pilot study at Loyola found that an experimental drug known as a "notch inhibitor" appears to block this process by turning off key genes. Kathy Albain, MD, who led the study, presented findings Dec. 7 during the 2011 CTRC-AACR San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.

Albain collaborated with scientists from Loyola, University of Mississippi Cancer Center, Baylor Breast Center and Merck Oncology.

"Our results suggest a potential role that notch inhibitors could play in optimizing existing therapies and in overcoming resistance to cancer drugs," Albain said.

The so-called notch protein promotes tumor growth and survival. The protein is present on the surface of cancer stem cells. The protein latches on to other cells, and the resulting "molecular handshake" activates various genes in the stem cells. Activating these genes, in effect, makes the stem cells resistant to common cancer drugs.

The study included 20 patients who finished all therapy. The women all had early-stage, estrogen-receptor-positive breast cancer.

Prior to surgery, the patients received one of two commonly used drugs, tamoxifen or letrozole. These drugs work by blocking estrogen stimulation of breast cancer cells. In addition to tamoxifen or letrozole, patients also received the experimental notch-inhibitor drug, MK-0752.

Following treatment with the notch inhibitor, patients underwent biopsies to provide tumor specimens. Researchers found that the drug turned off the key genes that in effect would have kept the tumor stem cells resistant to conventional drugs.

"The notch inhibitor appears to be doing what it is intended to do," said Clodia Osipo, PhD, a breast cancer scientist in Loyola's Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center.

There were minimal side effects from either the notch inhibitor or the estrogen-blocking drugs. One patient experienced puffy eyes and coughing and four patients experienced facial acne. No patients experienced diarrhea or surgical complications

The purpose of the study was to determine how well the notch inhibitor is tolerated and how it affects the expression of critical genes in cancer stem cells. The next step is to determine how effective the drug would be in treating breast cancer.

Researchers proposed a randomized clinical trial, in which patients who received estrogen-blocking drugs before surgery would be compared to patients who received estrogen-blocking drugs plus a notch inhibitor.
'/>"/>

Contact: Jim Ritter
jritter@lumc.edu
708-216-2445
Loyola University Health System
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. NIH grants to Childrens Hospital will advance novel stem cell treatments for blood disorders
2. A novel in vitro model for light-induced wound healing
3. Novel program translates behavioral and social science research into treatments to reduce obesity
4. Reovirus may be a novel approach to prostate cancer treatment
5. Novel stroke treatment passes safety stage of UCI-led clinical trial
6. Novel medical home program for pediatric patients, families cuts ER visits in half
7. MessageSolution First in the Market to Offer All-in-One, Integrated Cloud-Based Archiving for Email, File Systems and SharePoint at Novell BrainShare 2010
8. Novel Parkinson's Treatment Strategy Involves Cell Transplantation
9. Novel Method Eyed for Normalizing Blood Sugar
10. Novel soy germ-based dietary supplement, SE5-OH containing natural S-Equol, examined for safety and influence on hormones in pre- and post-menopausal women
11. Novel nanoparticles prevent radiation damage
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... , ... The temporary closing of Bruton Memorial Library on June 21 due to a possible ... often overlooked aspect of head lice: the parasite’s ability to live away from a human ... but a necessary one in the event that lice have simply gotten out of control. ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... 2016 , ... On Friday, June 10, Van Mitchell, Secretary of the Maryland ... iHire in recognition of their exemplary accomplishments in worksite health promotion. , The Wellness ... & Wellness Symposium at the BWI Marriott in Linthicum Heights. iHire was one of ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Marcy was in a crisis. Her son ... lash out at his family verbally and physically. , “When something upset him, he couldn’t ... would use it. He would throw rocks at my other children and say he was ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Topical BioMedics, Inc, makers of Topricin and MyPainAway Pain Relief Products, join The ... raise to $12 an hour by 2020 and then adjusting it yearly to increase at ... the minimum wage, assure the wage floor does not erode again, and make future increases ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... actively feeding the Frederick area economy by obtaining investment capital for emerging technology ... past 2½ years that have already resulted in more than a million dollars ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Roche (SIX: ... 510(k) clearance for its Elecsys BRAHMS PCT (procalcitonin) assay ... sepsis or septic shock. With this clearance, Roche is ... a fully integrated solution for sepsis risk assessment and ... with bacterial infection and PCT levels in blood can ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 , ... on Thursday, July 7, 2016 , , , , LOCATION: ... , , , , EXPERT PANELISTS:  , , , ... Senior Industry Analyst, Christi Bird; Senior Industry Analyst, Divyaa Ravishankar and ... The global pharmaceutical industry is witnessing an exceptional era. ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016 The vast majority of dialysis patients ... Treatments are usually 3 times a week, with treatment ... travel time, equipment preparation and wait time.  This regimen ... for patients who are elderly and frail.  Many elderly ... rehabilitation centers for some duration of time. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: