August 03, 2009

headway on cancer treatment!

Feeding cancers softens them up for attack

You would think the worst thing you could do to a cancer patient is to "feed" their tumour. Yet drugs that improve the blood supply to tumours can help hasten their destruction, new research has shown.

The hope is that by giving the drugs to sufferers as a pre-treatment, it will make their cancers more vulnerable to subsequent chemotherapy or radiotherapy.

The strategy has already had some success in patients with pancreatic cancer, and a larger trial is planned now that the mechanism by which it works has been demonstrated in mice.

Oxygen attack

The drugs work by repairing and improving the quality of blood vessels supplying tumours with blood.

Most tumours have blood supplies ...

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