Recently, says Medical XPress, an international research team discovered that the drug therapy 2-deoxy D-glucose can slow cell growth. In patients with ovarian cancer, the drug can halt the growth of cancerous cells while simultaneously increasing the efficacy of chemotherapy. This has major implications for the future of cancer treatment. Read the full article in Cancers.
Ovarian cancer is a cancer specifically occurring in the ovary, one of the hormone-producing organs which holds a woman’s eggs. There are four subsets:
- Germ cell carcinoma tumors: these tumors occur when cancer begins in the cells that form the eggs. About 5% of ovarian cancer diagnoses are germ cell carcinoma tumors.
- Epithelial tumors: cancerous cells occur in tissue that covers the ovaries. About 90% of ovarian cancer diagnoses are epithelial tumors.
- Stromal carcinoma tumors: in this form of ovarian cancer, cancerous cells form in connective tissue. About 5% of ovarian cancer diagnoses are stromal carcinoma tumors.
- Small cell carcinoma of the ovary (SCCO): this highly malignant and super rare ovarian tumor makes up around 0.1% of diagnoses.
In some cases, this cancer results from a mutated BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene. Normally, mutated BRCA genes result in breast cancer. However, women with BRCA variants are 10-30x more likely to develop ovarian cancer than those without BRCA mutations. Without treatment, it can spread to the bowel, bladder, lymph nodes, lung, liver, and abdominal lining.
Symptoms include bloating, pelvic pain, loss of appetite, abnormal bleeding, tender breasts, menstrual irregularities, uterine thickening, and abdominal inflammation. Want to learn more? Check out our website.
According to Professor John Hooper, the lead researcher:
“Ovarian clear cell carcinoma is associated with poor prognosis and resistance to chemotherapy.”
As a result, researchers sought to increase the efficacy of chemotherapy. Their particular focus was carboplatin, a chemotherapy drug. Their pre-clinical study used laboratory models of ovarian cancer. Cancerous cells were sourced from patient tumors. They found that a low dose of 2-deoxy D-glucose improved carboplatin efficacy and overall patient outcomes. Additionally, the lower dosage resulted in less adverse effects.
Moving forward, the researchers hope to partake in clinical trials within the next year.
2-deoxy D-glucose is a glycolic inhibitor. It prevents glucose metabolism. Many tumors and cancers require a source of energy for growth. By cutting out that source of energy, 2-deoxy D-glucose contributes to cell death. Read more about 2-deoxy D-glucose.