DCA, A probable Anti-cancer agent???

The old DCA or the Dichloracetate is back in the labs. This time with more colours and promises. As we know, DCA has been used in Mitochondrial diseases, metabolic disorders like Lactic acidosis, Huntingtons' for many years. Not very popular, given the low efficacy and high frequency of side effects. It is believed to work by acting on mitochondrial pyruvate dehydrogenase enzyme complex.

Now DCA has shown promise as a cheaper and safer agent for Cancers of all types. Michelakis ED, big name in Pulmonary Hypertension research and his team from University of Alberta, Canada has published a paper in
‘Cancer Cell’ recently showing inhibition of Cancer in in-vitro models and tumours in rats.

DCA targets the unique metabolic feature of Cancer cells, the ‘Aerobic Glycolisis’ which confers apoptosis resistance in cancer cells. So by this unique target, they spare normal cells. Theoretically this should be an ideal cancer agent. But, I am not very optimistic after witnessing so many theoretical successes and practical failures. We have to wait for more data.

Wait, Pharma industry is not very excited… guess why????? DCA is already in use and not patentable. … Ofcourse They are not here for Charity!!!!!

New Scientist has an article referring to this discovery “Cheap, safe drug kills most cancers”.

It sounds almost too good to be true: a cheap and simple drug that kills almost
all cancers by switching off their “immortality”. The drug, dichloroacetate
(DCA), has already been used for years to treat rare metabolic disorders and so
is known to be relatively safe.
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