Lung Cancer: New Drug Combo Reduces Tumors In Mice

By Hannah Lozada

Lung cancer; the second most diagnosed cancer in the United States according to the American Cancer Society. Most lung cancer cases are common among older people, with the average age being 70 years old. Thankfully, the number of these cases are decreasing since people are smoking less tobacco – a drug that causes over 80% of lung cancers. About 85% of cases are of ‘Non-small cell lung cancers’ (NSCLCs). This type of cancer is immune to chemotherapy and immunotherapy, so alternative treatments are trying to be utilized.

Recently, researchers from the Salk Institute and Northwestern University made a new discovery while experimenting on the mice. When the mice were exposed to the two drugs entinostat and trametinib, it prevented tumor growth and development in the rodents. Entinostat is still in clinical trials while trametinib has already been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Their research has been published on a website called “Science Advances.”

Dr. Lillian Eichner is a scientist who works at Northwestern University. She is an assistant professor and the author of this case. She made a statement on Medical News Today: “This treatment [of the two drugs: entinostat and trametinib] would be effective for patients with KRAS/LKB1 mutant lung adenocarcinoma… In the United States, there are [around] 20,000 new cases of this…disease [every year]” (Eichner). She also stated that the average survival time is around 10 months from the first diagnosis. As she ended her speech, Eichner stated, “…improved therapeutic approaches are sorely needed.” With the combination of entinostat and trametinib, it could potentially cure these cancers someday. 

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