News & Events

For Immediate Release

Bookmark & Share
Contact: Vicki Cohn, (914) 740-2156, vcohn@liebertpub.com
New Method to Sensitize Human Ovarian Cancer Cells to a Targeted Cytotoxic Drug

New Rochelle, NY, May 29, 2013—A novel, targeted approach to chemotherapy that makes ovarian cancer cells more susceptible to the cytotoxic effects of an antitumor drug may offer a safer, more effective treatment option for this often deadly form of cancer. The research and results are published in Nucleic Acid Therapeutics, a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers. The article is available free on the Nucleic Acid Therapeutics website.

Ovarian cancer is usually diagnosed at an advanced stage of disease, and although most patients initially respond to conventional chemotherapeutic agents, the cancer typically recurs and the overall survival rate is poor. Furthermore, current chemotherapeutics for ovarian cancer are nonspecific and generally toxic causing debilitating side effects. More effective and specific agents are needed that target ovarian cancer cells and inhibit their ability to reproduce.

Sibaji Sarkar and Douglas Faller, Boston University School of Medicine (Boston, MA), successfully advanced their research to develop anti-tumor drugs comprised of nucleic acids, the building blocks of DNA. They had previously shown that so-called "GT-oligos" (which target and bind to nucleic acid sequences present in regions found at the ends of chromosomes, called telomeres) can trigger cell death in certain types of cancer cells, including ovarian, pancreatic, and prostate cancer. However not all cancer cells in these and other tumor types are susceptible to the effects of GT-oligos.

In the current study the authors take this work a step further and demonstrate a novel method to sensitive resistant ovarian cancer cells to this targeted chemotherapeutic approach. They describe the details of this strategy and the potential to apply this technique more broadly to treat other types of epithelial cancers in the article "Telomere-Homologous G-rich Oligonucleotides Sensitize Human Ovarian Cancer Cells to TRAIL-Induced Growth Inhibition and Apoptosis."

“The devastating mortality rate from ovarian cancer has not changed since the ‘War on Cancer” was declared in 1971," says Executive Editor Fintan Steele, PhD, SomaLogic, Inc., Boulder, CO. “We need to improve both early diagnosis and find novel treatments. The work by Sarker and Faller provides a new and promising approach for treatment of this particularly difficult form of cancer.”

Nucleic Acid Therapeutics is under the editorial leadership of Co-Editors-in-Chief Bruce A. Sullenger, PhD, Duke Translational Research Institute, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC, and C.A. Stein, MD, PhD, City of Hope National Medical Center, Duarte, CA; and Executive Editor Fintan Steele, PhD (SomaLogic, Boulder, CO).

About the Journal
Nucleic Acid Therapeutics is an authoritative, peer-reviewed journal published bimonthly in print and online that focuses on cutting-edge basic research, therapeutic applications, and drug development using nucleic acids or related compounds to alter gene expression. Nucleic Acid Therapeutics is the Official Journal of the Oligonucleotide Therapeutics Society. Complete tables of content and a free sample issue may be viewed on the Nucleic Acid Therapeutics website.

About the Society
The Oligonucleotide Therapeutics Society is an open, nonprofit forum to foster academia and industry based research and development of oligonucleotide therapeutics. The society brings together the expertise from different angles of oligonucleotide research to create synergies and to bring the field of oligonucleotides to its full therapeutic potential.

About the Publisher
Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers is a privately held, fully integrated media company known for establishing authoritative peer-reviewed journals in many promising areas of science and biomedical research, including Human Gene Therapy, Genetic Testing and Molecular Biomarkers, ASSAY and Drug Development Technologies, and DNA and Cell Biology. Its biotechnology trade magazine, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (GEN), was the first in its field and is today the industry’s most widely read publication worldwide. A complete list of the firm’s 70 journals, books, and newsmagazines is available on the Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers website.