Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Drug Therapy To Bolster Immune System Cells Found Effective Toward Childhood Cancer

Date:
May 19, 2008
Source:
University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center
Summary:
Researchers have found a possible approach to therapy that may make cancer cells more sensitive to attack by immune system cells while making the immune system cells more powerful.

Researchers from The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center have found a possible approach to therapy that may make cancer cells more sensitive to attack by immune system cells while making the immune system cells more powerful.

The combination has the potential to treat different types of childhood cancer, including osteosarcoma, leukemia and neuroblastoma, while possibly sparing young patients from more difficult therapies such as stem cell transplant or more toxic chemotherapy.

Dean Lee, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of pediatrics from the Children's Cancer Hospital at M. D. Anderson, has found that combining the epigenetic drug MS-275 with natural killer (NK) cells makes osteosarcoma cells more sensitive to NK cells while making the NK cells more lethal to the tumor, as presented at the American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology annual meeting on May 15.

"Traditional chemotherapy drugs kill any fast-growing cells like cancer, but they also killed healthy fast-growing cells like hair, bone marrow and mucous membranes, making the drugs very toxic," says Lee, senior investigator on the study. "There's a new class of drugs that takes cells that aren't properly regulated and makes them behave. In our study, we found that these drugs make tumor cells more recognizable and vulnerable to natural killer cells."

Osteosarcoma is a rare pediatric cancer, but the most common bone cancer found in children. According to the American Cancer Society, it affects approximately 400 children, adolescents and young adults under the age of 20 in the United States each year, and nearly a third of those relapse. Relapsed and metastatic osteosarcomas are rarely sensitive to treatment with chemotherapy or radiation, but several studies have suggested these tumors may be immunologically responsive.

Lee's study of human tissue cultures shows the synergistic effect of combining NK cells with histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors such as MS-275 to fight childhood cancer, which Lee hopes will lead to a clinical trial for patients. When added to a human tissue culture, MS-275 heightened the amount of the NKG2D receptor on the NK cell's surface to pick up signals from stressed cells, such as tumor cells. In addition, the MS-275 simultaneously caused the stress signals of the tumor cells to increase, making it easier for NK cells to detect them and kill them.

Trials are currently open using HDAC and proteasome inhibitors as well as NK cells to treat patients, but not as a combination therapy.

"By applying what we've found from our study, we hope to improve our treatment for many cancers, but not by giving more NK cells or by giving more toxic chemotherapy," says Lee. "Instead, we want to marry the two therapies to improve each other and provide a more effective, less toxic treatment for our patients."

Lee's study found similar responses from acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) and neuroblastoma, but using different inhibitors. For neuroblastoma and AML, the proteasome inhibitors Bortezomib and NPI-0052 were found to have the greatest effect on sensitizing tumor cells to NK cells. Additional research is being conducted on acute lymphocytic leukemia, the most common cancer in children, and medulloblastoma, the most common brain cancer in children.

Other investigators on the study include Shiguo Zhu, Ph.D, and Laurence Cooper, M.D., Ph.D. from the Children's Cancer Hospital at M. D. Anderson. Funding for the study came from M. D. Anderson and the For Julie Foundation.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. "Drug Therapy To Bolster Immune System Cells Found Effective Toward Childhood Cancer." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 May 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080515113320.htm>.
University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. (2008, May 19). Drug Therapy To Bolster Immune System Cells Found Effective Toward Childhood Cancer. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080515113320.htm
University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. "Drug Therapy To Bolster Immune System Cells Found Effective Toward Childhood Cancer." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080515113320.htm (accessed August 29, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, August 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) State health officials say testing has confirmed the presence of a killer amoeba in a water system serving three St. John the Baptist Parish towns. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Who Could Be Burnt by WHO's E-Cigs Move?

Who Could Be Burnt by WHO's E-Cigs Move?

Reuters - Business Video Online (Aug. 28, 2014) The World Health Organisation has called for the regulation of electronic cigarettes as both tobacco and medical products. Ciara Lee looks at the impact of the move on the tobacco industry. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Director On Ebola Outbreak: 'It's Worse Than I Feared'

CDC Director On Ebola Outbreak: 'It's Worse Than I Feared'

Newsy (Aug. 28, 2014) CDC director Tom Frieden says the Ebola outbreak is even worse than he feared. But he also said there's still hope to contain it. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How A 'Rule Of Thumb' Could Slow Down Drinking

How A 'Rule Of Thumb' Could Slow Down Drinking

Newsy (Aug. 28, 2014) A study suggests people who follow a "rule of thumb" when pouring wine dispense less than those who don't have a particular amount in mind. Video provided by Newsy
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