Just Ask the Expert: NSAIDs and tumor suppression
Dr. Fan welcomes oncology questions from veterinarians.
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With the subject line: Oncology questionQ. Do any NSAIDs besides piroxicam suppress the growth of some cancers in dogs?
As such, a drug that inhibits COX-2 activity and subsequently reduces PGE2 production would theoretically be useful as a chemopreventive agent and even possibly as a therapeutic anticancer agent. However, despite the substantial biologic rationale for using NSAIDs in companion animals with cancers, little evidence exists as to their utility for effectively treating macroscopic tumor burdens.
Only piroxicam, a mixed COX-1 and COX-2 inhibitor, has been shown to exert single-agent anticancer effects in a handful of tumor histologies, particularly transitional cell carcinoma.1,2 Although numerous more-selective NSAIDs are available, to date no prospective or controlled studies have been performed to evaluate potential anticancer effects of NSAIDs other than piroxicam.
Timothy M. Fan, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (internal medicine, oncology)
1. Knapp DW, Richardson RC, Bottoms GD, et al. Phase I trial of piroxicam in 62 dogs bearing naturally occurring tumors. Cancer Chemother Pharmacol 1992;29(3):214-218.
2. Knapp DW, Richardson RC, Chan TC, et al. Piroxicam therapy in 34 dogs with transitional cell carcinoma of the urinary bladder. J Vet Intern Med 1994;8(4):273-278.