Fungus Drug Zaps Cancer in Study

New drug starves tumors of blood
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 30, 2008 6:39 AM CDT
Dr. Judah Folkman, the Andrus Professor of Pediatric Surgery at Harvard Medical School, who died in January 2008. A powerful new cancer drug has been developed from his work .    (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – A powerful new cancer drug has been developed from a fungus discovered by accident, Reuters reports. The drug, called lodamin, is dramatically effective against a range of cancers and works by starving tumors of blood, according to a new study published in the journal Nature Biotechnology. Mice infected with cancer cells were nearly cancer free within days.

"When I looked at the livers of the mice, the treated group was almost clean. In the control group you couldn't recognize the livers—they were a mass of tumors," said the lead researcher. "I never expected such a strong effect on these aggressive tumor models."