Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New tumor-targeting agent images, treats wide variety of cancers

Date:
June 11, 2014
Source:
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Summary:
A new class of tumor-targeting agents can seek out and find dozens of solid tumors, even illuminating brain cancer stem cells that resist current treatments, researchers report. What's more, years of animal studies and early human clinical trials show that this tumor-targeting, alkylphosphocholine (APC) molecule can deliver two types of "payloads" directly to cancer cells: a radioactive or fluorescent imaging label, or a radioactive medicine that binds and kills cancer cells.

Jamey Weichert (from left), Lance Hall and John Kuo collaborated on the study.
Credit: Image courtesy of University of Wisconsin-Madison

Scientists at the University of Wisconsin Carbone Cancer Center (UWCCC) report that a new class of tumor-targeting agents can seek out and find dozens of solid tumors, even illuminating brain cancer stem cells that resist current treatments.

Related Articles


What's more, years of animal studies and early human clinical trials show that this tumor-targeting, alkylphosphocholine (APC) molecule can deliver two types of "payloads" directly to cancer cells: a radioactive or fluorescent imaging label, or a radioactive medicine that binds and kills cancer cells.

The results are reported in the journal Science Translational Medicine, and featured in the journal's cover illustration and podcast.

The APC targeting platform is a synthetic molecule that exploits a weakness common to cancers as diverse as breast, lung, brain and melanoma. These cancer cells lack the enzymes to metabolize phospholipid ethers, a cell membrane component that is easily cleared by normal cells. When given in an intravenous solution, APC goes throughout the body -- even across the blood-brain barrier -- and sticks to the membrane of cancer cells.

The cancer cells take up the APC and the imaging or treatment medication riding on the molecular platform, and retain it for days to weeks, resulting in direct cancer cell imaging or treatment.

The APC analogs were able to tag 55 of 57 different cancers. This large study had multiple stages, including testing in cancer cell lines, in rodents and rodents infected with human and rodent cancers, and in human patients with different cancers such as breast, lung, colorectal and glioblastoma (brain cancer).

"I was a skeptic; it's almost too good to be true,'' says co-lead author Dr. John S. Kuo, associate professor of neurosurgery and director of the comprehensive brain tumor program at the UW School of Medicine and Public Health. "It is a very broad cancer-targeting agent in terms of the many different cancers that tested positive. The APC analogs even sometimes revealed other sites of cancer in patients that were small, asymptomatic and previously undetected by physicians."

Kuo specializes in the treatment of brain tumors, and also leads the UWCCC CNS Tumors group running many clinical trials for glioma, a brain cancer that is incurable because current treatments leave behind cancer stem cells that can seed and regrow the cancer. He says it was encouraging that the APC analogs also picked up cancer stem cells and will also likely target them for further treatment.

"It's also potentially superior to current imaging methods because the standard clinical MR or PET imaging may give false-positive results due to surgical scars, post-treatment effects, inflammation, or even infection, making it difficult to know if the cancer has truly returned,'' he says.

Kuo says the fluorescent intraoperative APC imaging might help make cancer surgeries more effective and safer; any cancer cells that cannot be safely removed can be targeted afterwards with radioactive APC therapy. In addition, APC imaging might avoid the "false positive" results of current imaging, so cancer patients can stay on effective therapies and likely avoid the risks and costs of "second look" surgeries.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. J. P. Weichert, P. A. Clark, I. K. Kandela, A. M. Vaccaro, W. Clarke, M. A. Longino, A. N. Pinchuk, M. Farhoud, K. I. Swanson, J. M. Floberg, J. Grudzinski, B. Titz, A. M. Traynor, H.-E. Chen, L. T. Hall, C. J. Pazoles, P. J. Pickhardt, J. S. Kuo. Alkylphosphocholine Analogs for Broad-Spectrum Cancer Imaging and Therapy. Science Translational Medicine, 2014; 6 (240): 240ra75 DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.3007646

Cite This Page:

University of Wisconsin-Madison. "New tumor-targeting agent images, treats wide variety of cancers." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 June 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140611143653.htm>.
University of Wisconsin-Madison. (2014, June 11). New tumor-targeting agent images, treats wide variety of cancers. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140611143653.htm
University of Wisconsin-Madison. "New tumor-targeting agent images, treats wide variety of cancers." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140611143653.htm (accessed December 19, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, December 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) It's hard to resist those delicious but fattening carbs we all crave during the winter months, but there are some ways to stay satisfied without consuming the extra calories. Vanessa Freeman (@VanessaFreeTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Kids Die While Under Protective Services

Kids Die While Under Protective Services

AP (Dec. 18, 2014) As part of a six-month investigation of child maltreatment deaths, the AP found that hundreds of deaths from horrific abuse and neglect could have been prevented. AP's Haven Daley reports. (Dec. 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dads-To-Be Also Experience Hormone Changes During Pregnancy

Dads-To-Be Also Experience Hormone Changes During Pregnancy

Newsy (Dec. 18, 2014) A study from University of Michigan researchers found that expectant fathers see a decrease in testosterone as the baby's birth draws near. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Prenatal Exposure To Pollution Might Increase Autism Risk

Prenatal Exposure To Pollution Might Increase Autism Risk

Newsy (Dec. 18, 2014) Harvard researchers found children whose mothers were exposed to high pollution levels in the third trimester were twice as likely to develop autism. 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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

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