Navigation Links
UAlberta researchers uncover why combination drug treatment ineffective in cancer clinical trials
Date:12/5/2013

Medical researchers at the University of Alberta have discovered that combination drug therapy didn't work well in clinical trials for cancer patients because one drug was making the other drug ineffective.

Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry researcher Michael Sawyer and his colleagues, including first author Vijaya Damaraju, recently published their findings in the peer-reviewed journal, Clinical Cancer Research.

In the '80s and '90s, cancer research focused on finding out which proteins "drove" cancers. New drugs targeting these proteins worked well by themselves, and some in the field believed combining the new drugs with the older chemotherapy drugs would work better than either drug by itself.

"So the pharmaceutical industry developed a combination of drugs in which we thought we were giving two drugs at once, but in actual fact the one drug we were giving was completely blocking the actions of the other drug," said Sawyer, who works in the Faculty's Department of Oncology.

"The old chemotherapy drugs required special proteins to get inside of cells to work. What our team discovered is that the new chemotherapy drugs prevented these proteins from carrying the old chemotherapy drugs into the cell. No one was able to figure out why this combination of drugs didn't work, but now we have discovered what went wrong." Sawyer says the findings will guide oncologists about how cancer drugs should be combined, or whether certain drugs should be combined at all.

"This will save us from doing millions of dollars in clinical trials that have no chance of working out. These findings show oncologists we have to be careful about which drugs should be combined. You have to think about how they actually work, especially in ways which no one understood before.

"Our research was actually like peeling an onion. Once we figured out the answer to one question, then other things the drugs did make more sense. Ultimately, the findings mean we'll be able to design better combination drug therapies. We'll know which drugs to combine, and when and how drugs can be combined. This will require more precise scheduling and dosing than what we've done to date."

He stressed the only patients impacted were those in clinical trials the combination drug therapy had not yet become common clinical practice because it wasn't working the way oncologists had hoped. And for those patients who took part in the clinical trials, the one chemotherapy drug was still very effective so those patients still received excellent care and drugs that properly targeted their cancers.

Sawyer and his team are continuing their research in this area. Their research was funded by the former Alberta Cancer Board, the Alberta Cancer Foundation and Alberta Innovates Health Solutions.


'/>"/>

Contact: Raquel Maurier
rmaurier@ualberta.ca
780-492-5986
University of Alberta Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. UAlberta prostate cancer researcher and team developing homing beacon drugs to target cancer cells
2. UAlberta medical researchers make key discovery in fight against Alzheimers disease
3. UAlberta medical researchers discover new potential chemotherapy
4. Alternative medicine use high amoung children with chronic conditions: UAlberta medical research
5. Alternative medicine use high among children with chronic conditions: UAlberta medical research
6. New UAlberta research shows commonly prescribed medications could have adverse effects
7. UAlberta researcher pinpoints prescription for successful Primary Care Networks
8. Low birth weight could be a risk factor for age-related vision loss: UAlberta medical research
9. Music decreases perceived pain for kids in pediatric ER: UAlberta medical research
10. NIH awards $20 million over 5 years to train next generation of global health researchers
11. Researchers develop a new cell and animal model of inflammatory breast cancer
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Global law firm Greenberg Traurig, P.A. announced that 20 Florida ... their peers for this recognition are considered among the top 2 percent of lawyers ... as members of this year’s Legal Elite Hall of Fame: Miami Shareholders Mark ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... at the Clinical Decision Making in Emergency Medicine conference in Ponte Vedra Beach, ... journal articles published in Emergency Medicine Practice and Pediatric Emergency Medicine ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Venture Construction Group (VCG) ... held on June 20th at the Woodmont Country Club at 1201 Rockville Pike, Rockville, ... dedicated to helping service members that have been wounded in battle and their families. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Southern Illinois University School ... for the Illinois State Dental Society (ISDS) Foundation’s Mission of Mercy (MOM). They ... Center in Collinsville. , They expect to treat approximately 2,000 patients ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... An article ... a possible link between head and neck cancer in individuals with unhealthy oral hygiene ... were evaluated based on whether they had gum disease, brushed their teeth on a ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 , , , ... 7, 2016 , , , , LOCATION: , , , ... , , , EXPERT PANELISTS:  , , , Frost & Sullivan,s ... Christi Bird; Senior Industry Analyst, Divyaa Ravishankar and Unmesh Lal, Program ... global pharmaceutical industry is witnessing an exceptional era. Several new demand ...
(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. ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Leading BioSciences Inc., a ... conditions resulting from a breakdown of the mucosal ... Greg Doyle as chief executive officer. Mr. ... management team and board of directors, previously served ... He will provide continued leadership and strategic direction ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: