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Arthritis drug may benefit colon cancer patients

Category: Colon

Colon cancer can be one of the most difficult forms of the disease to treat, especially for individuals with inherited risk factors, but lab tests are looking into the potential effectiveness of a common arthritis drug in treating this cancer.

It is believed that the drug, celecoxib, may suppress levels of a certain enzyme in the pancreas that is known to lead to colon polyps.

"Surgery is currently the standard treatment for this disease, and because the formation of polyps is relentless, patients often require multiple surgeries," said Dr. Marc Brand, principal investigator of the study. "Any drug that can prevent the formation of polyps, or even reduce the number of polyps, would be a great help for these patients."

Brand added that some children who have certain genetic predispositions to colon cancer have a much higher chance of developing the disease, which can lead to a lifetime of painful treatments and surgery.

The National Cancer Institute suggests testing for colon cancer risk factors because catching problems early can make them easier to treat.
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