Snap Summary: OCRA-funded researchers discovered a potential key to reducing chemotherapy resistance, and reducing recurrence rates for the most common type of ovarian cancer.
A research team at Magee-Women’s Research Institute, University of Pittsburgh, made a breakthrough in the fight to tackle chemoresistance, a pervasive issue in ovarian cancer treatment.
This groundbreaking study was led by Alexander Cole, PhD, an OCRA grantee; and Ronald Buckanovich, MD, PhD, an OCRA grantee and member of OCRA’s Scientific Advisory Committee, and was published in Clinical Cancer Research.
According to Dr. Cole, researchers discovered that the protein follistatin is secreted in cell lines following chemotherapy, where it induces chemoresistance. Disruption of this signaling pathway senstised tumours to chemotherapy, and increased cure rate in mice treated with taxol.
Dr. Cole credits OCRA funding with enabling the initial discovery that drove this promising research. Fueled by these results, researchers are working on a new therapy to inhibit the chemoresistant pathway, with the aim of decreasing chemoresistance and improving patient outcomes.