Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Drug shows promise as new treatment for gut tumor

Date:
January 14, 2010
Source:
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences
Summary:
Bortezomib, a drug that already is an approved therapy for some cancers, also might be an effective secondary treatment for a rare tumor of the gastrointestinal tract, say researchers.

A drug that is already an approved therapy for some cancers also might be an effective secondary treatment for a rare tumor of the gastrointestinal tract, according to a team led by researchers from the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute (UPCI). The findings, based on experiments using cell cultures, were published in the Jan. 1 issue of Cancer Research.

Bortezomib, or Velcade, is used to treat multiple myeloma and certain lymphomas, said Anette Duensing, M.D., assistant professor of pathology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, an investigator in the Cancer Virology Program, UPCI, and senior author of the study. It works in part by preventing the degradation of certain proteins, which when elevated, induce apoptosis, or programmed cell death, in the cancerous cells.

The researchers suspected that activity could provide an effective way of killing gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST) cells. Patients with these tumors are typically treated with imatinib, or Gleevec, and most do very well initially, but complete responses are rare, Dr. Duensing said. There is a need for second- and third-line agents to treat patients whose tumors have become resistant to imatinib. Most GIST patients eventually develop such resistance.

In experiments using a GIST cell line, the researchers found that administration of bortezomib led to cancer cell death through two mechanisms. First, the drug increased the production of a protein called H2AX, which promotes cellular apoptosis. Second, and unexpectedly, the drug also suppressed the cancer cells' production of an enzyme called KIT. Primary mutations in KIT initiate GISTs, and secondary KIT mutations are the driving force behind cancer progression as well as drug resistance in these tumors, Dr. Duensing noted. Importantly, bortezomib also was active against imatinib-resistant GIST cells.

"This is intriguing because resistance to imatinib seems to permit a small pool of quiescent cancer cells to survive," she explained. "But bortezomib eradicates KIT production, so it might be able to rid the body of the remaining tumor cells."

Bortezomib is not presently an appropriate first-line therapy for GIST, she cautioned. But the current findings support moving forward to a clinical trial in appropriate GIST patients to assess its benefits and risks as a secondary treatment.

The research team includes lead author Sebastian Bauer, M.D., and Thomas Mühlenberg, University of Essen Medical School, Germany; Jonathan A. Fletcher, M.D., Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School; Brian P. Rubin, M.D., Ph.D., Lerner Research Institute and Taussig Cancer Center, Cleveland; and Stefan Duensing, M.D., and other researchers from UPCI and the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

The research was supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health, the American Cancer Society, the GIST Cancer Research Fund, the Life Raft Group, Deutsche Krebshilfe, the Virginia and Daniel K. Ludwig Trust for Cancer Research, UPCI and the Pennsylvania Department of Health.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Bauer et al. Proapoptotic Activity of Bortezomib in Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor Cells. Cancer Research, 2010; 70 (1): 150 DOI: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-09-1449

Cite This Page:

University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences. "Drug shows promise as new treatment for gut tumor." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 January 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100111154928.htm>.
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences. (2010, January 14). Drug shows promise as new treatment for gut tumor. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100111154928.htm
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences. "Drug shows promise as new treatment for gut tumor." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100111154928.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