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New drugs show promise in brain tumors


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Posted on: 11/27/2003

New drugs show promise in brain tumors

Reported by Susan Aldridge, PhD, medical journalist

Experiments in mice reveal that four new drugs are effective at combating brain tumors. The survival rate for glioblastoma, the most common and lethal kind of brain tumor, has not changed in ten years and stands at about one year after diagnosis. But researchers at Duke Comprehensive Cancer Center in the US have a promising new approach to brain tumors.

They have tested four new drugs in mice with brain tumors. These drugs are far more precise than existing chemotherapy. They target growth factors within the cancer cells and so stop the tumor from expanding. One drug, which blocks off the blood supply to a tumor, was successful against three different types of brain tumor. This is a remarkable result, given that tumors can be very different in their biological make up.

The researchers also found a combination of two of these drugs to be especially effective. This reflects the increasing trend in cancer treatment towards combination therapy. They hope that this particular combination will be ready for human clinical trials within the next year.

Source

Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics Meeting 20th November 2003




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