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January 5th, 2010
Possible New Drug for Treatment of Brain or Prostate Cancer

A new experimental prescription drug called imetelstat is showing promise as a treatment for glioblastoma brain cancer and prostate cancer, based on results from clinical trials that tested the drug on human prostate cancer cells and rodents who had glioblastoma.

At the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center researchers found that imetelstat had a substantial effect on most of the tumor cells. The drug also affected cancer stem cells that cause much of cancer growth.

The mice with glioblastoma were also tested with imetelstat and researchers found that the drug was able to enter the brain from the bloodstream. This is important because most Canadian prescription drugs are not able to cross over from blood to brain.

Imetelstat is also currently being tested as an alternative treatment for breast cancer, lung cancer and lymphocytic leukemia in place of cancer medicationsĀ such asĀ Arimidex and Avodart.

The drug operates by targeting a mechanism that lets cancer cells to keep dividing. The mechanism is active in most cancers, and because the drug attacks it, imetelstat may be generally useful in treating many different types of cancers.

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