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Inflammation and drugs to control this activity studied in a variety of tumors sites

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Inflammation cuts both ways. When invaded by an infectious agent, for example, the body calls on the forces of inflammation to fight and defeat the intruder. But when the biochemical processes of the immune system are either misdirected or chronically turned on, inflammation can lead to adversity, including some forms of cancer. For this reason, scientists are closely studying the link between inflammatory processes and tumor formation, while others are investigating anti-inflammatory drugs as a means to prevent and treat cancer, as seen by studies presented today at the 97th Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research.

Antihistamine and Anti-inflammatory Drug Use Associated Differently for High-Grade Versus Low-Grade Gliomas: Abstract No. 486

Individuals who used antihistamines regularly for a six-month period or longer have nearly a three-fold greater risk of developing mid-grade brain tumors, and a two-fold risk of having low-grade tumors. Using anti-inflammatory medications helped protect against developing a deadly brain tumor called glioblastoma.

The researchers, led by Michael Scheurer, Ph.D., postdoctoral fellow in Cancer Prevention and Melissa Bondy, Ph.D., professor of Epidemiology, both at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, cautioned that they are not implying that use of antihistamines causes brain tumors, but rather that these medications may be part of a complex milieu of factors that contribute to their development.

Scheurer and Bondy used combined data from two studies: the Harris County Adult Glioma Study and the Bay Area Adult Glioma Study, led by Margaret Wrensch, Ph.D. at the University of California, San Francisco. As part of the studies, participants were asked about their use of antihistamines and anti-inflammatory drugs.

They compared antihistamine and anti-inflammatory drug use in 830 brain tumor cases and 831 controls m
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Contact: Warren R. Froelich
froelich@aacr.org
215-440-9300
American Association for Cancer Research
4-Apr-2006


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