Cardiac Hormones and Cancer

Here's an excerpt from an article on the American Physiological Society's website. It's very exciting and might indicate a huge step forward in the fight against cancer. In fact it's so impressive that I find myself having trouble believing it--but the source of the news is very credible and the researcher is a good one.

In any case, Dr Vesely will present his research at a symposium April 9 at the Experimental Biology 2008 conference in San Diego.

According to researcher David Vesely, a doctor at the James A. Haley Veterans Hospital in Tampa and a professor at the University of South Florida (USF), hormones produced by the heart eliminated human pancreatic cancer in more than three-quarters of the mice treated with the hormones and eliminated human breast cancer in two-thirds of the mice. Vesely is the hospital’s chief of endocrinology, diabetes and metabolism and is also professor of medicine, molecular pharmacology and physiology at USF.

Using colon, ovarian, breast, prostate and pancreatic cancer cells, Vesely found that the cardiac hormones kill up to 97% of all cancers in cell cultures within 24 hours. He then turned to trials with mice, injecting some with pancreatic cancer cells and others with breast cancer cells. Once the mice developed tumors, he treated them with the hormones.

At the end of one month, the treatment had eliminated cancer in 80% of the mice injected with human pancreatic cancer and in 66% of the mice injected with breast cancer. The results with pancreatic cancer were particularly exciting because it is a fast-moving cancer with poor prognosis.

The pancreatic cancers that were not cured were reduced to less than 10% of their original size. Treatment with vessel dilator gave the best results: reducing the tumor to 2% of its largest size. None of the mice died of cancer – all died of old age – and none suffered any side effects. If the hormones act the same way in humans, cancer could become a chronic condition treatable with these hormones, Vesely said.

The cardiac hormones are composed of amino acids and help regulate blood volume and blood pressure. Most hormones are made from amino acids including such well-known hormones as insulin. Hormones like this are known as peptide hormones.

If this pans out, it'll likely change the field of cancer research. Something like this would be fast tracked through the drug trial process...

UPDATE: a woman I work with who specializes in cardiology thinks that the mechanism involved here is NO (nitrous oxide). I don't know much about this area so I don't have an opinion. I mainly hear about nitrous oxide 'cause it's used in dentist offices, erect penises and movies involving fast cars. Talk about a chemical that has multiple and wide ranging uses!


GA Girl said…
Whoa! Let's see some reproduced results from other investigators, then I'll believe it.

I've never heard of cardiac hormones, Wiki doesn't have much to say. It looks like this is a unique application of the hormone. If this pans out the anti-cloning crowd will be decidedly unpopular!
kenju said…
It sounds very promising, Dave. I never heard of cardiac hormones either, but I wouldn't dismiss it.
Shephard said…
It sounds like hope to me. Always good to read. Even if it doesn't pan out, it's one step closer, as they say. Thanks for sharing that.
Cynnie said…
yeah what you said..
now where's the porn?
Deana said…
I really hope this pans out. Anything to get closer....
Into the Light said…
This sounds promising, but as in all treatments, I worry about what else the treatment causes. Still interesting...

But I am curious -- just how long do mice live? Who takes care of these mice until they "die of old age"?

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