Artificial heart patients 311.
(photo credit: Eli Dadon )
A new medicine in development is expected to make one of the most dreaded treatments in the fight against cancer - irrelevant. A new study conducted in both Europe and the US reports that a newly developed agent, Olaparib, will help attack breast and ovarian tumors effectively without subjecting patients to chemotherapy.
The researchers explain that Olaparib inhibits a certain protein that is involved in the reproduction of cancerous cells. The inhibition of this protein, in a tumor
cell that already lacks a functional BRCA gene, will induce cell death.
The study was undertaken in 16 centers in Australia, Germany, Spain,
Sweden, the UK and the US, and included women aged 18 years or more who suffered from recurrent,
advanced breast cancer and had been given a few previous chemotherapy
The patients were assigned to one of two groups – 27 women
were given 400 mg oral Olaparib twice daily and the other 27 women were
given 100 mg oral Olaparib twice daily. The higher dose showed a better
anti-tumorous activity, with an objective response rate of 41%,
compared with an objective response rate of 22% in the lower dose
group. Adverse events were mainly at low grades, mostly in the higher
dose group, and included fatigue, nausea, vomiting and anemia.
More clinical trials are necessary before Olaparib and other PARP
inhibitors may be used in practice, but these recent studies give new
hope for the future.
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