New drug shows promise in cancer treatment

A relatively new drug treatment for breast cancer has created exciting prospects from the future of breast cancer treatments.

Selective cyclin-dependent kinase 4/6 inhibitors block the enzymatic protein that regulates the process of cell division, which is required for growth. Over the past 20 years of testing, CDK inhibitors have finally had success in clinical trials.

It’s an exciting development, said Dr. Anu Thummala, an oncologist with a special interest in breast, colon and lung cancers and research at Comprehensive Cancer Centers of Nevada.

“The thought is that, if we can block CDKs, then we can slow cancer, which is not a new approach,” said Thummala, who is also a member of the Cancer Committee at Summerlin Hospital Medical Center.

Since 1998, CDK inhibitors have been tested in more than 60 clinical trials. The recent drugs, including Palbociclib, are more specific in blocking CDKs, making them much more effective and lessening the sometimes debilitating side effects.

“It has been a long journey since we first started to look at the CDK (inhibitors), and the clinical trials have shown exciting (results),” she said. “There is so much to be excited about. We are making progress for our patients.”

In March, the Food and Drug Administration approved Palbociclib, an inhibitor of cyclin-dependent kinases 4 and 6. This drug inhibits cell proliferation and cellular DNA synthesis by thwarting cell-cycle progression in specific phases where CD6 has a critical role in cell metabolism, the G1 to S phase. Ribociclib, in combination with letrozole for hormone-receptive breast cancer patients, has also shown promise.

“We want to help our patients not have all those side effects, which can be very difficult, like diarrhea, nausea and rash,” she said. “Overall, it is very well tolerated by our patients.”

Early breast cancer has been treated with hormone therapy in the past with good results. However, while the treatments reduce relapse rates in women, when cancer does come back, it can be harder to treat. The latest drugs that target CDK4 and CDK6 appear to improve the progression-free survival rate in patients, she said.

Thummala is a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology and Hematology, the Clark County Medical Society and the American, Texas and Nevada state medical associations. What she enjoys most about her job is the patients as well as the clinical trials that continue to bring good news about thwarting cancer.

“We are in a good field right now, a good place,” she said. “There are so many new therapies, so many new drugs.”

ad-high_impact_4
Life
Celebrity photographer dedicates dance book to Las Vegas shooting victims
Behind the scenes with local celebrity photographer Jerry Metellus as he talks about his Dance For Vegas coffee book dedicated to the 58 victims of the October 1 shooting. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @marcusvillagran
Dreamsickle Kids Foundation founder Gina Glass talks awareness
Gina Glass, 35, founded Dreamsickle Kids Foundation to raise awareness for sickle cell disease in Nevada. (Jessie Bekker/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
The Meadows School founding kindergarten teacher retires after 34 years at the school
Linda Verbon, founder of the The Meadows School's kindergarten program and the first faculty member hired at the school, retired in the spring after 34 years at The Meadows. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Kids become firefighters at Fire Station 98 open house
Henderson residents wore fire hats, learned about CPR and met firefighters at the Fire Station 98 open house Saturday, August 11, 2018. (Marcus Villagran Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
People from all over the world attend RollerCon 2018
RollerCon 2018 is a five-day convention focused on the roller derby community and culture at Westgate in Las Vegas. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Camp Broadway teaches kids how to sing and dance
The Smith Center's seventh annual Camp Broadway musical theater program gives 150 kids ages 6-17 an opportunity to learn musical theater skills from industry professionals over a five-day period. Marcus Villagran/ Las Vegas Review-Journal @brokejournalist
Las Vegas police officer on being PETA's Sexiest Vegan Next Door
Las Vegas police officer David Anthony talks vegan lifestyle and how he feels about being voted PETA's sexiest Vegan next door from his home on Monday, July 9, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like