Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Melatonin shows potential to slow tumor growth in certain breast cancers

Date:
January 28, 2014
Source:
Henry Ford Health System
Summary:
An early stage study shows melatonin -- a hormone that regulates the body's sleep and awake cycles -- may have the potential to help slow the growth of certain breast cancer tumors, according to researchers.

An early stage study shows melatonin -- a hormone that regulates the body's sleep and awake cycles -- may have the potential to help slow the growth of certain breast cancer tumors, according to researchers from Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit and Foundation for Research Support of the State of Sγo Paulo.

The study, published online in the journal PLoS One, finds that melatonin may inhibit tumor growth and cell production, as well as block the formation of new blood vessels in ER-negative breast cancer models.

"These early stage research results with the melatonin drug in a triple-negative breast cancer animal models achieved in our lab has not been seen anywhere else," says study co-author Adarsh Shankar, a research assistant in the Department of Radiology at Henry Ford Hospital.

"The key finding of the study is that we now know that we can trace this drug and its effect on tumor growth, which opens the door for more research on this topic."

Melatonin is a hormone naturally produced by the brain's pineal gland in response to darkness, and it is also available as a human-made supplement.

Because of melatonin's suspected antioxidant properties, some believe it may suppress the growth of some types of cancer cells, especially when combined with certain anti-cancer drugs, according to the American Cancer Society.

A promising tactic in limiting cancer progression is controlling angiogenesis, the formation of new blood vessels. Once a tumor exceeds a few millimeters in diameter, hypoxia (lack of oxygen) triggers a cascade of events to allow angiogenesis and tumor progression.

To determine the therapeutic effectiveness of melatonin on tumor growth, the Henry Ford Hospital and Foundation for Research Support of the State of Sγo Paulo researchers evaluated the action of melatonin on angiogenesis in ER-negative breast cancer in vitro and in vivo using cell and mouse models respectively.

The mice were randomly assigned to either the melatonin or control groups. The melatonin group received treatment each night for 21 days; melatonin was administered at pharmacologic concentration one hour before room lighting was switched off. Melatonin administered prior to the nocturnal is believed to be more effective because tissues are most sensitive to the hormone at this time.

At the end of the 21-day treatment, researchers used single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) to determine whether melatonin therapy effectively decreased the size of implanted human triple negative breast cancer in the mouse models and if there was be any changes in the formation of new blood vessels.

Additionally, tumor volume was measured each week and tumor tissue was analyzed at the end of treatment.

The study found that none of the treated mice showed any loss of weight and lethargy during the 21-day treatment; instead, most showed excessive movement but no irritability or aggressive behavior.

Those treated showed significantly smaller tumors after 21 days while the mean tumor volume increased significantly in the control group. And, there was less vascular growth in the tumors of the treated group. Results were also replicated in cell models.

The study showed that melatonin administered at pharmacologic concentration was able to reduce ER-negative breast cancer cell viability in vitro.

These results suggest that melatonin has the potential as a therapeutic agent for breast cancer.

The study's authors caution, however, that this research is still in its very early stages and results are not yet ready to be translated for patient use.

More basic research is needed on this topic -- particularly on how melatonin acts on angiogenesis in various cancers -- before clinical trials with humans can be planned.

 


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Henry Ford Health System. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Bruna Victorasso Jardim-Perassi, Ali S. Arbab, Lνvia Carvalho Ferreira, Thaiz Ferraz Borin, Nadimpalli R. S. Varma, A. S. M. Iskander, Adarsh Shankar, Meser M. Ali, Debora Aparecida Pires de Campos Zuccari. Effect of Melatonin on Tumor Growth and Angiogenesis in Xenograft Model of Breast Cancer. PLoS ONE, 2014; 9 (1): e85311 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0085311

Cite This Page:

Henry Ford Health System. "Melatonin shows potential to slow tumor growth in certain breast cancers." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 January 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140128103117.htm>.
Henry Ford Health System. (2014, January 28). Melatonin shows potential to slow tumor growth in certain breast cancers. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140128103117.htm
Henry Ford Health System. "Melatonin shows potential to slow tumor growth in certain breast cancers." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140128103117.htm (accessed April 19, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Newsy (Apr. 19, 2014) — Nine-month-old Wyatt Scott was born with a rare disorder called congenital trismus, which prevents him from opening his mouth. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) — In a potential breakthrough for future obesity treatments, scientists have used MRI scans to pinpoint brown fat in a living adult for the first time. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) — A new report shows rates of two foodborne infections increased in the U.S. in recent years, while salmonella actually dropped 9 percent. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) — The breakthrough could mean a cure for some serious diseases and even the possibility of human cloning, but it's all still a way off. 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