U.K Scientists in ‘Cancer Wonder Drug’ Hopes
Scientists working at Newcastle University in England claim to have found a way of making a new family of Breast Cancer pills effective against other, and possibly all types of cancer, including skin cancer. In addition to shrinking Tumors the new treatment would have the added benefit of reducing or eliminating entirely the side effects such as nausea and tiredness found in more traditional forms of cancer treatments such as chemotherapy.
The new treatment involves a family of drugs known as PARP Inhibitors which target inherited forms of Breast Cancer, Ovarian, Prostate and Pancreatic tumors. One of the great benefits of the new treatment is the fact that the PARP Inhibitors zero in on the Tumor, leaving the healthy cells which surround it unaffected. This causes little or none of the side effects found with regular Chemotherapy which affects healthy cells in addition to the Cancerous ones.
The key to the new treatment is the flaw in the gene called BRC1 found in hereditary forms of Breast Cancer which limits their ability to repair their DNA. Normal healthy cells have two ways of repairing damage to them whereas BRC cells have only one. PARP Inhibitors work by blocking this single pathway causing the cancerous cells to stop multiplying and killing existing ones.
The breakthrough has come as the U.K scientists have found a way to allow the drug to work on other types of tumors with do not contain this genetic flaw. The researchers discovered that by blocking a molecule known as Cdk1, the tumors, in this case situated in the lungs, also lost the ability to repair themselves, allowing them to be targeted by PARP Inhibitors and destroyed in the same manner as those tumors containing BRC1. Researchers are now in the process of trying to develop a new drug which will block Cdk1 allowing more patients to be treated with PARP Inhibitors.
Dr Lesley Walker of Cancer Research U.K has been quoted as saying ‘ If the researchers are able to develop an effective drug to block Cdk1, we could have a powerful new tool to treat cancer patients’.pennyjmay