Yesterday, I wrote about the Alpha DaRT technology that dissolves solid tumors in a number of days. Alpha DaRT was developed at Tel Aviv University in Israel. Today, I have stumbled on another exciting anti-cancer development from the same Tel Aviv University.

Prof. Malka Cohen-Armon and her team at TAU’s Sackler Faculty of Medicine, in collaboration with Dr. Talia Golan’s team at the Cancer Research Center at Sheba Medical Center have developed the  PJ34 molecule. According to their recently published article, this small molecule has the ability to induce the self-destruction of pancreatic cancer cells during mitosis.

In a research that was conducted with xenografts—transplantations of human pancreatic cancer into immunocompromised mice, the molecule reduced the number of cancer cells by 90% in the developed tumours a month after being administered. No adverse effects were observed, and there were no changes in the weight gain of the mice, nor in their behaviour.

Jerusalem Post reports that in an earlier study that was published by the authors in 2017, the PJ34 molecule was used to effectively treat triple-negative breast cancer implanted in xenografts. Just like pancreatic cancer, this type of breast cancer is very hard to treat and many women don’t live more than five years after being diagnosed.

This is a good development. It will take a long time before this molecule gets approved for the treatment of cancer. But it is definitely a step in the right direction. I will be following the progress of this molecule.

More information: The phenanthrene derivative PJ34 exclusively eradicates human pancreatic cancer cells in xenografts, Oncotarget (2019). DOI: 10.18632/oncotarget.27268

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