Celebrex May Slow, Prevent Skin Cancers
Study Shows High-Risk Patients Had Fewer Basal Cell Cancers After Taking Celebrex
New Strategy: The Hedgehog Pathway
Tang says it remains to be seen if other oral or even topical NSAIDs can
prevent or slow the growth of basal cell carcinomas and other non-melanoma skin
In an editorial published with the study, Johns Hopkins University
oncologist Charles M. Rudin, MD, PhD, writes about another promising skin
cancer prevention strategy, which targets something known as the hedgehog
"The hedgehog pathway is essentially a cell program that is turned on in
fetal development but is normally shut off in adult tissue," Rudin tells WebMD.
"But in some cancers this pathway is turned on, and basal cell carcinoma is one
of those cancers."
In early studies, Rudin and colleagues showed significant reductions in skin
lesions when patients with basal cell carcinomas took drugs designed to
inhibit, or shut off, the hedgehog pathway.
A trial is now under way in patients with Gorlin syndrome to determine if
hedgehog-inhibiting drugs prevent or slow the growth of tumors in this