NEWS – The Anticancer Fund has identified 300 drugs with the potential to be used as new cancer treatments. These drugs are on the market to treat other diseases, but they’ve shown evidence of anti-cancer effects in laboratory experiments or in people. Further research is necessary, but these drugs could potentially increase the survival of cancer patients.
The 300 drugs are listed in the Repurposing Drugs in Oncology (ReDO) database, curated by the Anticancer Fund. Repurposing is a strategy to find new treatments for diseases by looking at existing medicines rather than by creating totally new drugs.
The database, freely accessible online, lists each of the drugs and the type of evidence that shows anticancer effects, including test tube (in vitro) studies, animal studies (in vivo) and human data. Over 70 percent of the drugs have human data showing anticancer effects, including data from published case reports, observational studies and clinical trials.
Analysis of the database shows that of the 300 drugs, nearly 70 percent are included in the World Health Organisation’s Essential Medicines List, making these drugs globally available. Moreover, 85 percent are off-patent, which means that many of them are available at low cost.
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