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A drug currently used to treat HIV has been said to ‘dramatically’ slow the spread of prostate cancer.
In new research released this week, scientists have revealed that the HIV compound in the drug Maraviroc can help slow down the spread of prostate cancer in mice with the disease.
The drug managed to reduce the spread of the cancer to bones, brain and other organs by over 60 per cent – an incredible breakthrough.
The lead scientist in the research, Dr Richard Pestell, said the drug could move quickly through testing and be available to patients sooner rather than later, “Because this work shows we can dramatically reduce metastatis in pre-clinical models and because the drug is already approved for HIV treatment, we may soon be able to test whether this drug can block metastatis in patients with prostate cancer.”
Maraviroc works by targeting a protein molecule on the surface of cells called the CCR5 receptor – a receptor which the Aids virus uses to invade white blood cells.
Other research in previous years has shown that the CCR5 receptor could also be responsible for the spread of more aggressive forms of breast cancer to the lungs, and further research showed that the presence of CCR5 was more prevalent in prostate and breast tissues affected with cancer.