Drug Might Squeeze Out Bone Cancer

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bone cancerTHURSDAY, Nov. 16 (HealthDay News) -- An experimental drug prevented bone tumors in 50 percent of mice in a preclinical study, researchers report.

The results suggest this treatment may be able to prevent or treat metastatic tumors in bone, say scientists at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.

They determined the drug, known as VEGF121/rGel, stopped specialized cells within the bone from destroying material to make room for embedded prostate tumors. The drug may also inhibit the growth of blood vessels that feed bone tumors.

The findings appear in the current issue of Cancer Research.

If VEGF121/rGel can stop the growth of human prostate cancer cells in the bones of mice, it may also be able to halt the growth of other kinds of cancers in bones, the team noted.

"Many tumors invade bone in the same way, so these findings suggest it may be possible to shut down this process regardless of the tumor type," study author Michael G. Rosenblum, a professor in the department of experimental therapeutics, said in a prepared statement.

"If that could be done -- and we are a long way from determining if it is possible -- we may be able to offer the first treatment that specifically targets bone metastasis," he said.

Phase I human clinical trials of VEGF121/rGel are expected to begin soon at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.

source - Healthday 

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