Study Identifies Enzyme That May Play a Role in Chemotherapy’s Toxicity To the HeartBy Health News Team • Feb 17th, 2011 • Category: Heart Health, True Health News
Scientists at Queen's University Belfast have made a discovery that could reduce the prevalence of heart failure and increase the survival rates of patients who have cancer.
Lead investigator David Grieve and his colleagues from the school's Centre for Vision and Vascular Science have identified an enzyme called NADPH oxidase, which can cause life-threatening damage to the heart when a patient undergoes chemotherapy. These toxic effects have restricted how much treatment an individual can receive.
"Our research findings hold clear potential for the creation of new drugs to block the action of the enzyme, which could significantly reduce heart damage in cancer patients," Grieve explained. "Ultimately, this could allow for the safer use of higher doses of chemotherapy drugs and make the treatment more effective against tumors."
The team is concentrating its efforts on defining the exact role of NADPH oxidase in causing heart failure as a result of cancer therapy. They believe that these findings may help pave the way to the creation of a drug that could save the lives of many patients who are undergoing chemotherapy.