When fenbendazole, which is commonly used to treat helminth infections in dogs and cats, is administered orally to people, the drug causes very few side effects. It has also been shown to have antitumor activity in a number of different types of cancers, including stage four pancreatic cancer.
In January, Stanford researchers reported that the drug can shrink tumors and inhibit their spread. The work was published in Science Translational Medicine. It took an unusual combination of events to get the research from Glenn’s lab to this journal, including a collaboration with another Stanford group that developed a drug to block the action of some viruses and tumor cells.
To investigate whether fenbendazole, a widely-used antihelminth, might be an effective anticancer agent, we treated EMT6 mammary tumor cells in culture and solid tumors in mice with various intensive regimens of the compound. These treatments were combined with radiation or the antineoplastic vinca alkaloids berberine and sodium dichloroacetate. Despite the fact that the mechanisms of action of fenbendazole and several compounds known to act as radiosensitizers overlap, these experiments revealed no evidence that fenbendazole could enhance the cytotoxicity of these agents.
A semi-structured questionnaire was administered to cancer patients to determine how they acquired information about fenbendazole and the alleged anticancer effects of this drug. Most patients (84%) cited TV and acquaintances as the primary channels through which they obtained this information. Of these, some, including J and L, had seen Joe Tippens’ YouTube videos. fenbendazole cancer