Toward the first nose drops to treat brain cancer

Sep 22, 2010

Scientists are reporting the development and successful initial testing of a new form of methotrexate -- the mainstay anticancer drug -- designed to be given as nose drops rather than injected. It shows promise as a more effective treatment for brain cancer, they say. The report appears in ACS' Molecular Pharmaceutics journal.

Tomotaka Shingaki and colleagues note that brain cancer is difficult to treat, partly because current anticancer drugs have difficulty reaching the brain. That's because the so-called blood-brain barrier (a protective layer of cells surrounding the brain) prevents medication in the blood from entering the brain. But new evidence indicates that some drugs administered through the nose, either as nose drops or nasal spray, can bypass this barrier and travel directly into the brain. Among them are drugs for migraine headaches. Until now, however, nobody knew if methotrexate might do the same.

The scientists tested methotrexate nose drops on laboratory rats with . Compared to cancer treated with an injectable form of the drug, the nose drop drug reduced the weight of tumors by almost one-third, the scientists said. "The strategy to utilize the nose-brain direct transport can be applicable to a new therapeutic system not only for but also for other disorders such as ," the article noted.

Explore further: Growing a blood vessel in a week

More information: "Transnasal delivery of methotrexate to brain tumors in rats: A new strategy for brain tumor chemotherapy", Molecular Pharmaceutics.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Drug helps brain tumor patients live longer

Jan 28, 2008

People who receive high doses of the chemotherapy drug methotrexate to treat a certain type of brain tumor appear to live longer than people receiving other treatments, according to research published in the January 29, 2008, ...

NASA's ENose can sense brain cancer cells

Apr 30, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- An unlikely multidisciplinary scientific collaboration has discovered that an electronic nose developed for air quality monitoring on Space Shuttle Endeavour can also be used to detect odour differences in ...

Recommended for you

Growing a blood vessel in a week

Oct 24, 2014

The technology for creating new tissues from stem cells has taken a giant leap forward. Three tablespoons of blood are all that is needed to grow a brand new blood vessel in just seven days. This is shown ...

Testing time for stem cells

Oct 24, 2014

DefiniGEN is one of the first commercial opportunities to arise from Cambridge's expertise in stem cell research. Here, we look at some of the fundamental research that enables it to supply liver and pancreatic ...

Team finds key signaling pathway in cause of preeclampsia

Oct 23, 2014

A team of researchers led by a Wayne State University School of Medicine associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology has published findings that provide novel insight into the cause of preeclampsia, the leading cause ...

Rapid test to diagnose severe sepsis

Oct 23, 2014

A new test, developed by University of British Columbia researchers, could help physicians predict within an hour if a patient will develop severe sepsis so they can begin treatment immediately.

User comments : 0