Ovarian Cancer Coverage from Every Angle

Sequential Chemotherapy for Ovarian Cancer

By: Celeste L. Dixon
Posted: Friday, May 22, 2020

New laboratory research has demonstrated that the duration of classic chemotherapy for ovarian cancer may potentially be shortened if the drugs are given sequentially with epigenetic therapy. Not only does this strategy maintain the treatments’ efficacy against the disease, it may also lessen damage to normal tissue, according to Leona Chang, DO, of Cooper University Hospital in Camden, New Jersey, and colleagues.

The study examined the effects of paclitaxel and cisplatin administered in combination or in sequence with the epigenetic drugs azacitidine and/or suberoylanilide hydroxamic acid (SAHA). The results were made available as part of the virtual platform of the 2020 Society of Gynecologic Oncology (SGO) Annual Meeting on Women’s Cancer (Abstract 108).

The researchers administered the drugs to three types of normal cells: adipocyte-derived stem cells (ASC), primary fibroblasts, and human intestinal epithelial cells (HIEC-6). They found that paclitaxel and cisplatin followed by azacitidine or SAHA appeared to be less toxic to ASC and primary fibroblasts (up to 96% viability) when compared with all four given together (1% viability; P < .0001), whereas paclitaxel and cisplatin followed by SAHA was least toxic to HIEC-6 (100% viability; P = .0356).

Once the least-toxic regimens were determined, the ovarian cancer cell lines Caov-3, SKOV-3, and OVCAR-3 were administered these agents, explained Dr. Chang and colleagues. “Paclitaxel and cisplatin followed by epigenetic drugs target ovarian cancer cells more efficiently than two rounds of paclitaxel and cisplatin (P < .001),” they wrote. “Levels of VEGF and IL-6 were significantly downregulated after treatment with paclitaxel and cisplatin followed by SAHA in most ovarian cancer cells, SKOV-3 and OVCAR-3.”

Disclosure: The study authors reported no conflicts of interest.

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