Israeli scientists aim to produce world’s first preventive drug designed to prevent tumors from causing secondary cancersAnd tell that the active principle has shown efficacy of more than 90 percent in rats.
The research team at Bar Ilan University created a peptide – a chain of amino acids – that is designed to stop cancer cells from entering the blood and thus moving through the body.
They have published peer-reviewed research showing that it successfully inhibits metastasis in mice, meaning that it stops the spread of diseased cells that can lead to secondary cancer.
The cells of many solid tumors develop invadopodia, foot-shaped structures that protrude from their surface. They act like battering rams, forcing their way through tissue to help cancer cells enter the bloodstream and metastasize to other organs.
But invadopodia only spring into action when they are “activated” by the binding of two proteins. Professor Jordan Chill, co-author of the study, says that Bar Elan’s success has been in finding a peptide that blocks the interaction of this protein.
,We believe that it may inhibit the activation of invadopodia and thus inhibit metastasis. I hope it can be used as an adjunct to chemotherapy or other treatments that kill cancer cells.“, Told.
The reported efficacy rate means that the breast cancer mice that received the peptide were at least 90% less likely to develop secondary tumors than the control group.
Although the study focused on breast cancer, the team expects the peptide to be effective in all solid tumors, ie cancers other than blood, bone marrow, or lymph nodes.
Previous research has shown that 12% of patients diagnosed with breast cancer develop metastatic disease, with a five-year survival rate of 26%. Chemotherapy is used to kill as many cancer cells as possible, but it doesn’t stop those that survive from becoming active.
,Our progress is very exciting, because today there is no drug that prevents metastasis, [o] In other words, they exist specifically to prevent cancer from spreading.”, he declared The Times of Israel Study co-author Dr. Hava Gil-Hein.
“Most drugs focus on shrinking tumors after they’ve been developed. We’re taking a preventive approach, which can prevent many people from getting a second disease and save many lives.”
Chill said the next challenge is to develop the peptide as a drug, with a delivery mechanism that gets it to the right place in the human body.
“So far we have the arrow of the missile; Now we have to develop the complete missile.
The Times of Israel