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ACS: Dog Cancer Therapy Success May Extend to Humans

Experimental 'Trojan horse' drug enters cancer cells through B12 receptors

TUESDAY, March 24 (HealthDay News) -- A new compound that delivers cancer-killing nitric oxide molecules via vitamin B12 receptors on cancer cells dramatically reduced the size of tumors in three dogs and could point the way for research in treating human cancers too, according to a case study presented at the American Chemical Society's 237th National Meeting, held March 22 to 26 in Salt Lake City.

Joseph A. Bauer, Ph.D., of the Cleveland Clinic, and colleagues described using the experimental drug nitrosylcobalamin in three dogs with cancer: a 13-year-old spayed female Giant Schnauzer with a thyroid carcinoma, a 6-year-old neutered male Golden Retriever with a malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumor, and a 10-year-old neutered male Bichon Frise with anal sac adenocarcinoma. The dogs were given a 28 mg/kg dose of the drug twice daily.

The Giant Schnauzer had a 77 percent reduction in tumor size after 10 months of treatment, the Golden Retriever had a 39 percent reduction in tumor size after nine months, and the Bichon Frise had a 43 percent reduction of the primary tumor and a 90 percent reduction of a lymph node tumor after 15 months, the researchers report. Bauer said after successfully treating 10 dogs, he wants to conduct a study in humans.

"If you can find an agent to treat cancer that occurs in a dog with success, there is a higher likelihood that you can take that to the human population and have a much higher response rate than with mice," Bauer said in a statement.

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