My good college friend Barbara Evans, just wrote me about an article that she saw in the San Francisco Chronicle this week. I found the following in SF Gate, the electronic version of the Chronicle:
New potential treatment for glioblastoma
“Scientists at California Pacific Medical Center Research Institute and UCSF discovered a potential treatment for glioblastoma, an aggressive and deadly form of brain cancer.
The treatment relies on an already-approved antiviral drug, called cidofovir, an injectable medication used to treat a viral eye infection called cytomegalovirus retinitis.
The researchers behind the new discovery previously had demonstrated that human cytomegalovirus retinitis is linked to the development of glioblastoma in that the virus may reside in the brain’s stem cells before they become malignant. The virus is found in 90 percent of primary brain tumors.
In their experiments, the scientists used cidofovir to treat human brain tumor cells as well as brain tumors in mice generated from human tumor cells. The cells died and tumor development in the mice was delayed. Survival rate in the mice was significantly increased compared with untreated animals.
Glioblastoma, also called glioblastoma multiforme, is relatively rare but still the most common primary brain tumor. Just two or three people are diagnosed with the disease for every 100,000 people in North America. Most people live about 15 months after being diagnosed.
A clinical trial using cidofovir for glioblastoma patients is expected to begin next year.
The study was published Tuesday (Oct. 29, 2013) in the medical journal Clinical Cancer Research.”
It is all pretty amazing.