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One-two punch: Small peptides attack ovarian cancer cells and their environment

ovarian cancer psaptides
Serous ovarian carcinoma (Nephron via Wikimedia Commons)

Ovarian cancer is the fifth leading cause of cancer death among women. Tumors often remain silent until they have spread; as a result, many women go undiagnosed until the disease has already advanced. Ovarian cancer cells often develop resistance to chemotherapy with taxanes and platinum agents, leaving few therapeutic options for women with advanced disease.

Two small peptides could present a new approach to ovarian cancer and potentially other tumors. Derived from a naturally-occurring human protein, they forced tumors to shrink significantly in an animal model of metastatic ovarian cancer, report researchers from Boston Children’s Hospital’s Vascular Biology Program, the University of Bergen and Weill Cornell Medical College in Science Translational Medicine last week.

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