Drug created from malaria parasite shows promise as bladder cancer treatment

Issue: BCMJ, vol. 59 , No. 5 , June 2017 , Pages 279 News

A drug created from a malaria protein stopped tumor growth of chemotherapy-resistant bladder cancer, offering hope for cancer patients not responding to standard treatments. The study advances previous research that showed that a protein from the malaria parasite, called VAR2CSA, could target a wide range of cancer tumors.

In the new research, highly aggressive bladder cancer tumors that were completely resistant to chemotherapy were implanted in the bladder of mice. The researchers then tested whether the malaria protein could deliver drugs directly to tumors—which responded dramatically to the malaria drug combo. Eighty percent of the treated animals were alive after 70 days, whereas all the other animals, in three different control groups, succumbed to bladder cancer.

Bladder cancer is the fifth most common cancer and the most expensive cancer to manage on a per patient basis. Currently, there is only one line of chemotherapy used for invasive bladder cancer, and there have been few advances in finding new treatments in the past 20 years.

Previous studies established that the VAR2CSA protein could be used to deliver cancer drugs directly to tumors because it binds to a sugar molecule that is found only in cancer tumors and the placenta of pregnant animals. These latest findings demonstrate that the same sugar is expressed in bladder cancer and is especially abundant in tumors that progress after being treated with the standard chemotherapy drug cisplatin.

The researchers’ next step is to design a process that could see the VAR2CSA drug combination manufactured on a larger scale to begin clinical trials. The study, “An oncofetal glycosaminoglycan modification provides therapeutic access to cisplatin-resistant bladder cancer,” was published in European Urology (www.europeanurology.com/article/S0302-2838(17)30232-4/fulltext).

. Drug created from malaria parasite shows promise as bladder cancer treatment. BCMJ, Vol. 59, No. 5, June, 2017, Page(s) 279 - News.



Above is the information needed to cite this article in your paper or presentation. The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) recommends the following citation style, which is the now nearly universally accepted citation style for scientific papers:
Halpern SD, Ubel PA, Caplan AL, Marion DW, Palmer AM, Schiding JK, et al. Solid-organ transplantation in HIV-infected patients. N Engl J Med. 2002;347:284-7.

About the ICMJE and citation styles

The ICMJE is small group of editors of general medical journals who first met informally in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 1978 to establish guidelines for the format of manuscripts submitted to their journals. The group became known as the Vancouver Group. Its requirements for manuscripts, including formats for bibliographic references developed by the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM), were first published in 1979. The Vancouver Group expanded and evolved into the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE), which meets annually. The ICMJE created the Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals to help authors and editors create and distribute accurate, clear, easily accessible reports of biomedical studies.

An alternate version of ICMJE style is to additionally list the month an issue number, but since most journals use continuous pagination, the shorter form provides sufficient information to locate the reference. The NLM now lists all authors.

BCMJ standard citation style is a slight modification of the ICMJE/NLM style, as follows:

  • Only the first three authors are listed, followed by "et al."
  • There is no period after the journal name.
  • Page numbers are not abbreviated.


For more information on the ICMJE Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals, visit www.icmje.org

BCMJ Guidelines for Authors

Leave a Reply

CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Image CAPTCHA
Enter the characters shown in the image.