Sechenov University to improve cytostatic agent therapy

front.jpgResearchers at Sechenov University have embarked on preclinical studies of a molecule that could have a “boosting” effect on the current anti-cancer drugs.

The cytostatic agents — widely used in therapy today — may eventually cause cancer cells to become resistant. The new substance developed at Sechenov University is designed to “help” cancer cells restore their susceptibility to drugs which trigger apoptosis.

While studying apoptosis, or programmed cell death, scientists elucidated regulation patterns of the ratio of Bax and Bcl-2 proteins and identified factors that could be used to enhance the initiation of apoptosis in cancer cells.

“Research on apoptosis control is carried out worldwide. Our discovery can be used in the treatment of many diseases, especially cancer. After all, putting it simply, cancer cells are cells that have lost the ability to ‘obey’ signals ordering them to stop proliferating,” said Andrey Zamyatnin, Director of the Institute of Molecular Medicine at Sechenov University. “This new molecule is not a drug in the classical sense. We have developed a substance that makes cancer cells sensitive to cytostatic agent therapy. And now, after successful laboratory tests on cancer cell lines, we are ready to move into the preclinical phase — because for a new drug we must establish its safety, not only the efficacy.”

The preclinical in vivo studies will be conducted at the Institute of Translational Medicine at Sechenov University as part of the Priority 2030 strategic academic leadership programme.