Device delivers toxic chemo cocktail to pancan tumor, spares body

Researchers have found a way to hit pancreatic cancer hard with a drug-delivery device that puts a lethal combination of four chemo drugs directly into the tumor while limiting the impact on the rest of the body.

Pancreatic cancer is a killer, and to attack a killer you sometimes need to hit it with a highly toxic drug cocktail. However, doing this through the bloodstream only works in a few patients because of the widespread damage to the rest of the body.

In the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the team from the University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill describes how they tested the implantable “iontophoretic device” in mice.

The researchers found that using the iontophoretic device to deliver a particularly toxic mix of four chemotherapy drugs stopped pancreatic tumors in the mice from growing – and in some cases even shrank them – while sparing the rest of the body.

Senior author Jen Jen Yeh, an associate professor of surgery and pharmacology in the UNC School of Medicine, says:

“It’s an exciting approach because there is so little systemic toxicity that it leaves room to administer additional drugs against cancer cells that may have spread in the rest of the body.”

In their study, the team found that compared with intravenous delivery, the iontophoretic device “resulted in better tumor response and tolerability,” when used to attack pancreatic tumors in mice with FOLFIRINOX – a combination of the chemotherapy drugs folinic acid (leucovorin), fluorouracil, irinotecan and oxaliplatin.

Helping more patients qualify for surgery

FOLFIRINOX is a first-line treatment for pancreatic cancer and has been shown to halt or shrink tumors in nearly a third of patients. However, because it is so toxic to the rest of the body, there are many patients who cannot tolerate it when it is delivered through the bloodstream.

The implantable device uses an electric field to drive the chemotherapy drugs directly into the tumor.

The new study follows another published a year ago where the team showed the first successful use of the iontophoretic device in treating human pancreatic tumors grafted into mice and dogs.

Pancreatic cancer is the cause of 7% of all cancer deaths and ranks fourth as a cause of cancer death in both men and women every year in the US, where rates of the disease have been rising by 1.2% a year over the last 10 years.

Early stage pancreatic cancer usually has no symptoms and spreads quickly to the rest of the body, making it difficult to detect and harder to treat when it is found in its later stages.

Consequently, only one in four patients survive more than a year after diagnosis – a statistic that has not changed in over 40 years.

Surgery to remove the pancreatic tumor is currently the best chance of cure, but unfortunately only 15% of patients have operable tumors.

The hope is that the new device will halt and potentially shrink tumors so that more patients with localized and locally advanced pancreatic cancer qualify for surgery.

The team is planning to get the device into clinical trials in the next few years.

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*credit verbatim via Catharine Paddock PhD and *

10 Effective Natural Remedies To Treat Pan Can

10 Effective Natural Remedies To Treat Pancreatic Cancer

Are you taking treatment for pancreatic cancer? Or do you just want to prevent yourself from becoming its victim? Whatever it is, in today’s polluted world and environment, arming ourselves against deadly diseases like cancer is a must.

And pancreatic cancer is one of the most virulent forms of cancer. What makes it so devastating is its ability to go undetectable, showing no symptoms. So, unless you prepare and shield yourself, you might not escape from its clutches.

Are there any home remedies that can help prevent pancreatic cancer? Yes, there are! And if you want to know more about pancreatic cancer and the home remedies that can help prevent it, then this post is a must-read for you!

What Causes Pancreatic Cancer?

Pancreatic cancer can be caused by a multitude of reasons. The causes of pancreatic cancer remain shrouded in mystery. However, there are certain habits that can increase your chances of contracting the disease, like smoking or chewing tobacco. If you suffer from frequent pancreatic disorders, you are more likely to contract pancreatic cancer.

Although none of these remedies are permanent cures, some pancreatic cancer natural remedies include:

1. Broccoli:

This cruciferous vegetable is an effective remedy for pancreatic cancer. It contains many antioxidants that eliminate carcinogenic free radicals. It is also rich in phytochemicals that also attack cancer cells. Broccoli is also a great detoxifier for the blood (1).

2. Red Grapes:

Grapes, specifically red ones, help provide relief from many pancreatic disorders, most notably, pancreatitis. Grapes also contain proanthocyanidins. The proanthocyanidins help reduce estrogen production and help cure diseases like pancreatic cancer and lung cancer (2).

3. Green Tea:

Green Tea has long been mooted as one of the most popular natural remedies. Green tea is entirely herbal and is crammed with antioxidants that have free radical killing characteristics. Having a cup of green tea daily can help cure pancreatic cancer. An independent study in Japan found that people who had around three cups of green tea daily had a reduced risk of contracting pancreatic cancer (3).

4. Aloe Vera:

Aloe Vera is one of the most soothing plants. It is especially good for inflammatory disorders and it also helps relieve pancreatic and prostate cancer. Have fresh Aloe Vera gel once daily to keep pancreatic cancer in check (4).

5. Fresh Fruit Juice:

Drinking fresh fruit juice can be quite beneficial for you, if you suffer from cancer. Fresh fruit juices contain many essential vitamins and minerals that help fight cancer and prevent it as well. Typically, apples, cherries, mangoes, oranges are the most beneficial fruits for you. Juices also help boost your immunity and taste great as well. They have antioxidants that attack carcinogenic free radicals and pathogens (5).

6. Lycopene:

Lycopene is the best natural remedy for pancreatic cancer. Lycopene is commonly found in watermelons, apricots and guavas. Lycopene is especially effective on stomach and pancreatic cancers and you should consider consuming lycopene rich fruits daily to prevent and treat pancreatic cancer (6).

7. Soya Bean:

Soya bean inhibits the cancerous cells from utilizing estrogen. It has been known to be extremely effective in fighting cancer. You should eat soya bean sprouts or cook soya bean to prevent and cure pancreatic and breast cancer. Soya bean is rich in anticarcinogenic enzymes (7).

8. Ginseng:

Ginseng is one of the most undermined herbs. It is known to increase immunity and help treat pancreatic cancer. It is one of the best natural remedies for pancreatic cancer (8).

9. Maitake Mushroom:

These mushrooms have been proved to be useful in the treatment of pancreatic cancer. Maitake mushrooms not only help reduce and ease the violent troubles caused by radiotherapy and chemotherapy, but also help improve the efficacy of chemotherapy (9).

10. Wheatgrass:

Another naturally occurring herb, wheatgrass is one of the best pancreatic cancer home remedies. It stops the development of the cancerous cells. Wheatgrass has also been known to boost our immunity and remove toxins from our body (10).

Remember that these are home remedies and cancer treatments cannot be substituted with these. The ideal thing to do is use these pancreatic cancer natural remedies along with your cancer treatment.

*credit verbatim via *

Pancreatic cancer: anybody can get it

Pancreatic cancer: anybody can get it

Steve Jobs died of Pancreatic Cancer:

Many people think that they can get cancer only if they have certain ‘bad’ habits’. Unfortunately, cancer isn’t attracted to only the ‘bad habits’. Though certain things are definitely the causes of cancer, like smoking and excess intake of alcohol; it’s a myth that it is caused only due to such reasons. The best example is pancreatic cancer. The exact cause of this cancer is still unknown, but one thing is sure that anyone can get this type of cancer.
Steve Jobs, a well known personality, Apple founder and former president of Apple, died after an eight-year long fight against pancreatic cancer. This example shows that anyone can get this cancer. Medical experts say that pancreatic cancer is not a common form of cancer. But it certainly is the most deadly type of cancer. The cancer is extremely aggressive. It spreads rapidly and is often not diagnosed until the late stages. Treatment options for pancreatic cancer are also relatively small.
How to prevent Pancreatic Cancer
They say prevention is better than cure. This is pretty applicable to pancreatic cancer. The disease’s prevention is much easier than the treatment itself. Though there is no exact prevention known yet, but its risk factors like smoking and excessive alcohol consumption can be controlled.
Like the other types of cancers, pancreatic cancer is also treated with chemotherapy after surgical removal of the pancreas. This treatment is painful and has hazardous side-effects. During this treatment, it is necessary to follow proper diet in order to provide proper supply of nutrients to the body. The natural pancreas supplement like Pancrea-Healer Alpha help the patient regain his energy and body nutrients. It’s an excellent source of vitamin C, Calcium, Iron and Potassium which increase the energy levels of the body, improves digestion and lovers the blood sugar level and in fact increases food intake for healthy living.
*credit verbatim via*

Costa Rican Receives Patent For Pancreatic Cancer Vaccine

Christian Marin-Muller, molecular biologist and business manager with a PhD in molecular virology, is the 33 year old Costa Rican that has what few scientists achieve in life: a patent for a vaccine.

From his laboratory at Baylor College of Medecine in Texas, Marín paved the way for a vaccine against pancreatic cancer.

The vaccine is not preventive, rather it is a therapeutic vaccine that is applied in order to reduce or control the tumor.

Working on the vaccine with Marin-Muller were Qizhi Yao and Changyi Chen .

The key to stop the growth and spread of pancreatic cancer could be found in a microRNA called MiR-198, said researchers at Baylor College of Medicine in a report that appears online in the journal Clinical Cancer Research.

Their findings reveal a treatment target that, when modulated in the lab setting, reduces tumors and makes them more susceptible to chemotherapy.

Before this vaccine is approved, it requires human clinical trials.

Clinical trials have three phases: in the first the safety of the vaccine (side effects) is tested, in the second efficacy ( as served) and the third will confirm the two previous phases.

This process takes about 10 years, but being that pancreatic cancer is a very aggressive cancer for which no treatment is accurate, it could take only three years.

The process is expensive , costing about US$ 1 billion.

However, Marin told La Nacion in an interview, he is hopeful that there are companies interested and materialize his dream of helping in the treatment of one of the most aggressive and deadly tumors.

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*credit verbatim via and Rico*

Pancreatic cancer may be treatable with tree extract

With no effective treatments currently available, there is an urgent and important need to develop new drugs to treat pancreatic cancer. After carrying out tests in lab cells and mice, researchers propose that nimbolide, a natural extract from the leaves of the neem tree, could meet such a need.

In the journal Scientific Reports, a team of biomedical scientists at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso (TTUHSC El Paso) reports how nimbolide can stop pancreatic cancer growing and spreading without harming normal, healthy cells.

Senior and corresponding author Rajkumar Lakshmanaswamy, an associate professor in TTUHSC El Paso’s Center of Emphasis in Cancer, says:

“The promise nimbolide has shown is amazing, and the specificity of the treatment towards cancer cells over normal cells is very intriguing.”

Pancreatic cancer is the fourth leading cause of cancer-related death in the US and is projected to become the second leading cause by 2020. It is the only major cancer, note the authors, where fewer than 6 out of every 100 patients survive more than 5 years after diagnosis.

The main reason pancreatic cancer is so deadly is because it is very difficult to diagnose in the early stages, before it has started to spread and invade surrounding tissue and other organs, which it does very fast.

Consequently, most patients with pancreatic cancer are diagnosed when the disease is in an advanced stage. For them, surgery is rarely an option, underscoring the importance of finding new therapies.

Nimbolide boosts production of reactive oxygen species:

Nimbolide is a natural extract derived from the leaves and flowers of the neem tree (Azadirachta indica) that is widely used in traditional medicine to treat a variety of human ailments.

Previous studies of nimbolide’s effect in lab cells and animals reveal that nimbolide has a number of anti-cancer properties. The compound interferes with cancer cell signaling pathways that are linked to inflammation, survival, growth, invasion, development of tumor blood vessels and cancer spread, or metastasis.

The new study, which tests nimbolide specifically on pancreatic cancer cell lines and mice, finds the compound is effective in inhibiting cancer growth and metastasis.

The researchers found that nimbolide boosts the production of a group of molecules known as reactive oxygen species (ROS), which is known to regulate cell death by apoptosis (self-killing) and autophagy (self-eating).

Further experiments in the pancreatic cancer cell lines revealed that ROS generation by nimbolide curbed proliferation of cells and reduced their ability to migrate, invade and form colonies.

However, the authors note that an area that needs to be researched further is the complex interplay between apoptosis and autophagy resulting from the nimbolide-induced boost in ROS. In this study, the anti-cancer effect of nimbolide seems to be via apoptosis, and not via autophagy, which other studies suggest may actually increase cancer cell survival.

Nimbolide ‘attacks pancreatic cancer from all angles’:

The results show that nimbolide reduced the size and number of pancreatic cancer cell colonies by 80% and curbed their migration and invasion capabilities by 70%.

Experiments in live mice also showed that nimbolide is effective in inhibiting pancreatic cancer growth and metastasis, note the authors.

“Nimbolide seems to attack pancreatic cancer from all angles,” says Prof. Lakshmanaswamy.

An important finding of the study is that nimbolide did not appear to harm healthy cells – either in the lab cultures or in the live mice.

As many people in India eat neem and do not appear to experience harmful side effects, the authors suggest using nimbolide for pancreatic cancer would be unlikely to produce the side effects typically seen with chemotherapy and radiation therapy.

However, while this fact and the study findings all sound promising, Prof. Lakshmanaswamy points out there is still a long way to go before nimbolide is ready for treating pancreatic cancer in humans.

The team is continuing their research into the anti-cancer properties of nimbolide and also plans to investigate how best to administer it to maximize its effect on pancreatic cancer.

Meanwhile, Medical News Today recently learned how researchers have found a way to hit pancreatic cancer hard with a device that uses an electric field to drive a deadly combination of four chemo drugs directly into the tumor while limiting side effects to the rest of the body.

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*credit verbatim via and Catharine Paddock PhD*

How certain drugs alter metabolism of pancreatic cancer cells

UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers have found that cancer drugs known as CDK4/6-inhibitors alter the metabolism of pancreatic cancer cells, revealing a biologic vulnerability that could be exploited for therapeutic gain. The findings were published today in Cell Reports.

Because pancreatic cancer has one of the worse prognoses of any cancer and is the third leading cause of cancer deaths in the U.S., according to the National Cancer Institute, researchers for years have sought to find better treatment options.

Last year, the FDA approved the first cyclin-dependent kinase 4/6 (CDK4/6) inhibitor for treating a certain type of advanced breast cancer. This class of drugs has been widely studied in clinical trials for many other types of cancer, including pancreatic cancer. CDK 4/6 inhibitors are cytostatic, meaning they work by preventing cancer cells from growing and dividing.

“On the one hand, that’s great, because the tumor won’t grow, but on the other hand, the patient still has a tumor, which will eventually become resistant to those drugs,” said study senior author Dr. Erik Knudsen, Professor of Internal Medicine in the Eugene McDermott Center for Human Growth and Development at UT Southwestern.

“There’s a lot of interest in better understanding the biology behind CDK4/6 inhibitors — and in finding out whether we can use that information to kill tumors instead of simply stopping their growth,” added Dr. Agnieszka Witkiewicz, also in the McDermott Center and an Associate Professor of Pathology.

In this study, the research team treated human pancreatic cancer cells and tumors grown in mice with CDK4/6-inhibiting drugs. Surprisingly, they found that when tumor cells were treated with CDK4/6 inhibitors, the cells’ metabolism — the way cancer tumors get energy — became more active.

“Now we can try attacking specific aspects of CDK4/6-induced metabolic programming,” said Dr. Knudsen, also a member of UT Southwestern’s Harold C. Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center, along with Dr. Witkiewicz. “For example, by targeting altered tumor metabolism, we could potentially turn the cytostatic effect of CDK4/6 inhibitors into a cytotoxic effect that actually kills the cancer cells.”

The upshot is that by disrupting a tumor’s cell cycle with CDK4/6 inhibitors and then targeting the altered metabolism with other drugs — such as mTOR inhibitors — it may be possible to positively impact cancer treatment.

“These data yield valuable new insights into the cross talk between CDK inhibitors, signaling pathways, and tumor metabolism in pancreatic cancer, opening up some interesting new possibilities for treatment that could be evaluated in clinical trials,” Dr. Witkiewicz said. “The real goal is that this work — as well as ongoing studies — will benefit patients with pancreatic cancer.”

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*credit verbatim via provided by UT Southwestern Medical Center


Scientists discover how diabetes drug Metformin slows down pancreatic cancer

Researchers at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) might have stumbled upon the mechanism of how the diabetes drug metformin can slow down the progression of cancer of the pancreas.

The details of the study are published in the journal PLOS One, where the team describes that this common diabetes drug decreases the inflammation and fibrosis seen commonly in pancreatic cancer. However, based on their findings in patient tumor samples as well as cellular and animal models, the researchers add that in overweight and obese patients might benefit more from this surprising metformin discovery.

The study focused on the most commonly occuring pancreatic cancer – pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA) – which kills almost 40,000 people in the U.S. ever year. Half of those diagnosed with PDA are overweight or obese, and almost 80 percent are insulin resistant or have type 2 diabetes.

Previous analyses have revealed that Diabetic patients taking metformin have a lower risk of developing PDA; and those who do have PDA have a reduced fatality rate. But before the current study nobody knew how or why this drug inhibited the progress of pancreatic cancer.

The team discovered that metformin increases a collection of tumor-associated immune cells and a dense connective tissue which are both characteristic of pancreatic cancer. According to the lead author of the study, Dai Fukumura, MD, PhD, of the Steele Laboratory of Tumor Biology in the MGH Department of Radiation Oncology, metformin does this by slowing down the activation of the pancreatic stellate cells (cells that cause fibrosis and interact closely with cancer cells to create a tumor friendly environment) and by reprogramming immune cells to reduce inflammation.

However the team observed that hat these changes were more pronounced in the tumors of obese and overweight individuals, in whom the tumors had increased fibrosis.

In fat mice, the researchers found that metformin treatment reduced levels of tumor-associated macrophages by 60 percent. The tumors of animals treated with metformin also had showed a reduction in metastasis, suggesting a lower risk in the spread of the cancer.

This new evidence is part of a wave of findings that suggest that regular everyday drugs can play a huge role in preventing and fighting cancer. In fact an organization called ReDo has been set up solely for this purpose of finding regular drugs with anti-cancer properties.

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*credit verbatim via and Mohan Garikiparithi*