A drug in testing to treat atherosclerosis significantly inhibited growth of ovarian cancer in both human cell lines and mouse models, the first such report of a peptide being used to fight malignancies, according to a study by researchers at UCLA's Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center.
The study follows previous discovery by the same group showing that a protein called apolipoprotein A-I (apoA-I) in patients may be used as a biomarker to diagnose early stage ovarian cancer, when it typically is asymptomatic and is much easier to treat. These earlier findings could be vital to improving early detection, as more than 85 percent of ovarian cancer cases present in the advanced stages, when the cancer has already spread and patients are more likely to have a recurrence after treatment, said Dr. Robin Farias-Eisner, chief of gynecologic oncology and co-senior author of the study with Dr. Srinu Reddy, a professor of medicine.
"The vast majority of ovarian cancer patients are diagnosed with advanced disease and the vast majority of those, after surgery and chemotherapy, will eventually become resistant to standard therapy," Farias-Eisner said. "That's the reason these patients die. Now, with this peptide as a potential therapy, and if successful in clinical trials, we may have a novel effective therapy for recurrent, chemotherapy-resistant ovarian cancer, without compromising the quality of life during treatment."
The study was published Nov. 1, 2010 in the early online edition of the peer-reviewed journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
In their previous work, Farias-Eisner, Reddy and their research teams identified three novel biomarkers that they used to diagnose early stage ovarian cancer. In September 2009, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration cleared the first laboratory test that can indicate the likelihood of ovarian cancer, OVA1TM Test, which includes the three biomarkers identified and validate
|Contact: Kim Irwin|
University of California - Los Angeles