Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Bacteria Target Cancers In Mice

Date:
December 5, 2001
Source:
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions
Summary:
Scientists from the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins have created bacteria that selectively target large advanced tumors in mice. Results of their experiments are reported in the November 27, 2001 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Scientists from the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins have created bacteria that selectively target large advanced tumors in mice. Results of their experiments are reported in the November 27, 2001 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The scientists found a way to exploit a special germ’s taste for oxygen-starved environments and direct them to target pockets of dead and dying cells within large tumors. These advanced tumors generally have areas of poor blood circulation and thus little oxygen. The lack of oxygen renders them relatively resistant to conventional chemotherapy and radiation but open to bacteria that can grow without oxygen.

“The idea is to selectively attack these tumors from inside with the bacteria and from the outside with chemotherapy,” says Bert Vogelstein, M.D., Clayton Professor of Oncology and Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

The scientists systematically screened numerous bacterial species to find one that would thrive in an oxygen-poor environment and, at the same time, destroy surrounding tumor cells. They settled on one spore-forming bacterial species, called Clostridium novyi (C.novyi). C.novyi is normally found in soil and dust and contains a toxin that can cause lethal side effects in animals. They genetically modified the bacteria to remove the toxin gene to make them harmless to normal animals. Then, they injected spores of these bacteria and conventional chemotherapeutic agents into mice with large tumors composed of transplanted human colon cancer cells.

The results achieved with this strategy, called COBALT for combination bacteriolytic therapy were dramatic. More than half of the tumors treated, including very large tumors, were completely destroyed within 24 hours. The tumors decomposed and turned into blackened scars, while the surrounding healthy tissues remained intact. The tumor scars then gradually disappeared over the next two weeks, leaving healthy tissue behind.

Clinical trials are not planned at this time as it will take several years to determine which chemotherapy agents make the best combinations and to develop strategies to avoid the toxicity associated with rapid destruction of large tumor masses. “We hope that this research will add a new dimension to cancer treatment, but realize that the way tumors respond to treatment in mice can be different than in humans,” says Kenneth Kinzler, Ph.D., professor of oncology.

Funding for this research was provided by the Miracle Foundation, the National Colorectal Cancer Research Alliance, the Clayton Fund, and the National Institutes of Health.

In addition to Vogelstein and Kinzler, participants of this research include Long H. Dang, Chetan Bettegowda, and David L. Huso from the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. "New Bacteria Target Cancers In Mice." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 December 2001. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/11/011127004139.htm>.
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. (2001, December 5). New Bacteria Target Cancers In Mice. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/11/011127004139.htm
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. "New Bacteria Target Cancers In Mice." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/11/011127004139.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com
$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

Newsy (July 20, 2014) Cynthia Robinson claims R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company hid the health and addiction risks of its products, leading to the death of her husband in 1996. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Newsy (July 19, 2014) Research on plaque from ancient teeth shows that our prehistoric ancestor's had a detailed understanding of plants long before developing agriculture. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Contaminated Water Kills 3 Babies in South African Town

Contaminated Water Kills 3 Babies in South African Town

AFP (July 18, 2014) Contaminated water in South Africa's northwestern town of Bloemhof kills three babies and hospitalises over 500 people. The incident highlights growing fears over water safety in South Africa. Duration: 02:22 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins