The Many Miracles of Aspirin

Cancer metastasis treated with non steroidal anti inflammatory drugs

(RxWiki News) Non steroidal anti inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are inexpensive, common and effective against pain relief. But if inflammation is involved in cancer formation, what else might these drugs do?

New research from Australia shows that these common, widely available drugs known as NSAIDs may actually help reduce the spread of tumors, especially lymph node metastasis.

NSAIDs are theorized to slow tumor metastasis by two different methods.

"Ask your oncologist about using NSAIDs as part of your therapy."

The study investigated the growth factor VEGF-D in human tumors, known to be involved in lymph node metastasis, and showed that NSAIDs reduced the pathways that led to VEGF-D production, and consequently shrunk the size of the lymph vessels.

VEGF-D is a class of growth hormone that causes new blood and lymph vessel formation, and is commonly involved in tumor growth.

The NSAID family is large with many widely known members such as aspirin, Advil (ibuprofen), Aleve (naproxen), Indocid (indomethacin), Toradol (ketorolac), and Celebrex (celecoxib).

"This key interaction between lymphatic system growth factors and prostaglandins reveals a mechanism for physically preparing collecting vessels for tumor cell dissemination and a mechanism by which NSAIDs can reduce cancer metastases through the lymphatic system," concludes Steven Stacker, Ph.D.

"These insights may assist with the design of additional therapeutics for cancer patients and enhance current approaches that aim to prevent the spread of cancer cells through the lymphatic system and potentially to distant organs," he adds.

Stacker is an associate professor at the Tumour Angiogenesis Program, part of the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne, Australia.

The study was published in the journal Cancer Cell.