Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Scientists discover way to stop pancreatic cancer in early stages, study suggests

Date:
January 12, 2011
Source:
University of Oklahoma
Summary:
Cancer researchers have found a way to stop early stage pancreatic cancer in research models -- a result that has far-reaching implications in chemoprevention for high-risk patients.

Cancer researchers at the Peggy and Charles Stephenson Oklahoma Cancer Center have found a way to stop early stage pancreatic cancer in research models -- a result that has far-reaching implications in chemoprevention for high-risk patients.

The research already has sparked a clinical trial in California, and the FDA-approved drug, Gefitinib, should be in clinical trials at OU's cancer center and others nationwide in about a year. The research appears in the latest issue of Cancer Prevention Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

C.V. Rao, Ph.D., and his team of researchers were able to show for the first time that a drug used in current chemotherapy for later stages of pancreatic cancer had a dramatic effect if used earlier.

With low doses of Gefitinib, which has no known side effects at this level, scientists were able to not only stop pancreatic cancer tumors from growing, but after 41 weeks of treatment, the cancer was gone.

"This is one of the most important studies in pancreatic cancer prevention," Rao said. "Pancreatic cancer is a poorly understood cancer and the focus has been on treatment in the end stages. But, we found if you start early, there will be a much greater benefit. Our goal is to block the spread of the cancer. That is our best chance at beating this disease."

The Oklahoma cancer center research team said the finding points to an effective way to stop pancreatic cancer before it reaches later stages of development where the survival rate drops below 6 percent.

Currently, most pancreatic cancer is not identified until the later stages. However, research is moving closer to the development of an early detection test for pancreatic cancer. When that is in place, Oklahoma cancer center researchers believe they now have a method to target the cancer before it spreads.

Rao said OU officials and researchers will meet with other centers, including M.D. Anderson, whose specialists called the research "provocative," to discuss a pilot study in early 2011. Researchers hope to begin a Phase II clinical trial at the centers within 18 months. A Phase I trial is not required since the drug already has approval for human use from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

The clinical trials will focus on at-risk patients, particularly those with an inflammation of the pancreas called pancreatitis. The drug also could help other high risk populations, including patients with a family history of pancreatic cancer and American Indian populations or others with Type 2 diabetes.

Gefitinib works by targeting signals of a gene that is among the first to mutate when pancreatic cancer is present. By targeting the signal for tumor growth expressed by the mutated gene, researchers were able to stop the cancer's procession.

"This gene is the key in 95 percent of cases of pancreatic cancer. It is our best target," Rao said. "By targeting this gene, we can activate or inactivate several other genes and processes down the line."

Rao said the drug also could be effective in lung and colorectal cancer, but it is not known if it would work as well as in pancreatic cancer. The OU College of Pharmacy is assisting in the development of drugs and imaging techniques needed to further test Gefitinib with patients.

Rao's research was funded by a grant from the National Cancer Institute.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Oklahoma. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. A. Mohammed, N. B. Janakiram, Q. Li, V. Madka, M. Ely, S. Lightfoot, H. Crawford, V. E. Steele, C. V. Rao. The Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Inhibitor Gefitinib Prevents the Progression of Pancreatic Lesions to Carcinoma in a Conditional LSL-KrasG12D/ Transgenic Mouse Model. Cancer Prevention Research, 2010; 3 (11): 1417 DOI: 10.1158/1940-6207.CAPR-10-0038

Cite This Page:

University of Oklahoma. "Scientists discover way to stop pancreatic cancer in early stages, study suggests." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 January 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110111133228.htm>.
University of Oklahoma. (2011, January 12). Scientists discover way to stop pancreatic cancer in early stages, study suggests. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 16, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110111133228.htm
University of Oklahoma. "Scientists discover way to stop pancreatic cancer in early stages, study suggests." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110111133228.htm (accessed September 16, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) President Obama is expected to send 3,000 troops to West Africa as part of the effort to contain Ebola's spread. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Man Floats for 31 Hours in Gulf Waters

Man Floats for 31 Hours in Gulf Waters

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) A Texas man is lucky to be alive after he and three others floated for more than a day in the Gulf of Mexico when their boat sank during a fishing trip. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
EU Ministers and Experts Meet to Discuss Ebola Reponse

EU Ministers and Experts Meet to Discuss Ebola Reponse

AFP (Sep. 15, 2014) The European Commission met on Monday to coordinate aid that the EU can offer to African countries affected by the Ebola outbreak. Duration: 00:58 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Despite The Risks, Antibiotics Still Overprescribed For Kids

Despite The Risks, Antibiotics Still Overprescribed For Kids

Newsy (Sep. 15, 2014) A new study finds children are prescribed antibiotics twice as often as is necessary. 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