McMaster University researchers discover drug destroys human cancer stem cells but not healthy ones

May 24, 2012 at 2:51 pm Leave a comment

A team of scientists at McMaster University has discovered a drug, thioridazine, successfully kills cancer stem cells in the human while avoiding the toxic side-effects of conventional cancer treatments.

“The unusual aspect of our finding is the way this human-ready drug actually kills cancer stem cells; by changing them into cells that are non-cancerous,” said Mick Bhatia, the principal investigator for the study and scientific director of McMaster’s Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute in the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine.

Unlike chemotherapy and radiation, thioridazine appears to have no effect on normal stem cells.

The research, published today in the science journal CELL, holds the promise of a new strategy and discovery pipeline for the development of anticancer drugs in the treatment of various cancers. The research team has identified another dozen drugs that have good potential for the same response.

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Entry filed under: Biotechnology News and Info from Canadian Universities. Tags: , , .

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