In ray of hope for doctors to identify the tumour normalising period for effective timing of anti-cancer drug treatment, a team of researchers have discovered a new biomarker that can visualise the activity of blood vessels.
Angiogenesis, the formation of new blood vessels, is essential for tumour growth. The team from Osaka University in Japan, in a paper reported in The American Journal of Pathology, described a vascular stabilization biomarker that can visualize blood vessel activity, thus optimising the timing of anticancer therapies including anti-angiogenics.
Combination therapy using angiogenesis inhibitors and anticancer drugs can improve drug delivery into tumour tissues and prolong progression-free survival. “Vascular normalisation by angiogenesis inhibitors, such as vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) signaling inhibitors, is a promising method for improvement of chemotherapy.
“However, it is unclear how we can recognise the ‘window of opportunity’ for the tumour vascular normalising period for effective timing of anti-cancer drug treatment. Therefore, biomarkers delineating this window are essential,” explained Nobuyuki Takakura, Professor at Research Institute for Microbial Diseases, Osaka University.
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Angiogenesis therapy is clinically used to suppress tumour growth. Adding an anti-angiogenic drug can boost an anticancer drug’s effectiveness. Basic research indicates that anti-angiogenic therapy allows the blood vessels to return to quiescence and “normalise” so that the anti-cancer drug can penetrate the tumour more effectively. IANS