SEP 15, 2016 4:26 AM PDT

Pancreatic Cancer and Schizophrenia Drugs


Pancreatic cancer is one of the most difficult cancers to treat. It's aggressive and spreads quickly. It's also pretty sneaky. Tumors don't often cause symptoms until the disease is very advanced and prognosis is usually very poor. Research into slowing the growth of this deadly disease and finding a cause is ongoing, but so far has not yielded much. A recent study may have found something significant however.

Researchers from the German Cancer Research Center at Heidelberg and McGill University in Montreal have completed a study that shows a receptor for the neurotransmitter dopamine is involved in the spread of pancreatic tumors. It's also involved in the brain disorder schizophrenia. A medications that shuts off this receptor, haloperidol, was given to mice who had been altered to develop pancreatic cancer. In the mice who received the anti-psychotic drug, tumors were smaller and grew more slowly. Much more research before it's known if this would work in human patients, but hopefully this early research can lead scientists in the right direction
About the Author
  • I'm a writer living in the Boston area. My interests include cancer research, cardiology and neuroscience. I want to be part of using the Internet and social media to educate professionals and patients in a collaborative environment.
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