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Artificial & Replacement Organs & Tissues Cancer Immune System Surgery

Study sheds new light on transplant, cancer link

10 years ago

683  0
Posted on Jul 15, 2008, 8 p.m. By Jeanelle Topping

Targeted therapies in patients who have undergone organ transplantation could help reduce risk of cancer, new findings suggest.

Targeted therapies in patients who have undergone organ transplantation could help reduce risk of cancer, new findings suggest.

Researchers at Harvard Medical School have discovered that the immunosuppressant drug cyclosporine can often lead to cancer by enabling the growth of new tumor-feeding blood cells.

Figures show that 15 to 20 per cent of transplant patients develop cancer within ten years of the surgery.

Senior investigator, Dr Soumitro Pal, an assistant professor at Harvard Medical School's Transplantation Research Center at Children's Hospital in Boston, explained: "Once the organ has stabilized, it may be possible to lower the level of vascular endothelial growth factor expression to prevent tumor growth. We would need to figure out how to balance benefit and risk to keep cancer at bay."

Dr Pal added: "It is likely not the whole story, but this gives us a clue that we might be able to use existing or novel therapies to reduce cancer risk in transplanted patients."

The study, published in the latest issue of Cancer Research, was carried out in animal and laboratory experiments.ADNFCR-1506-ID-18687490-ADNFCR

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