Effect of combined cyclooxygenase-2 and matrix metalloproteinase inhibition on human sarcoma xenografts.. David S Dickens; Timothy P Cripe (2003) Journal of pediatric hematology/oncology : official journal of the American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology display abstract
PURPOSE: Sarcomas express cyclooxygenase (COX)-2, an inducible enzyme with known tumor-promoting activity. COX-2 inhibition is efficacious against many cancer types but has not been tested for human sarcomas. Matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) inhibitors also possess antiproliferative activity. Because MMP inhibitor therapy induces COX-2 expression, the authors hypothesized that the combination of COX-2 and MMP inhibitors results in a synergistic antitumor effect. METHODS: Human osteosarcoma or rhabdomyosarcoma cells were injected into athymic mice. Tumor development and growth were measured following treatment with a COX-2 inhibitor (celecoxib), an MMP inhibitor (doxycycline), or both. The tumors were analyzed for necrosis, apoptosis, cyclooxygenase activity (PGE2 production), and MMP-2 levels. RESULTS: When treatment was started prior to tumor cell implantation, doxycycline inhibited osteosarcoma tumor growth alone and in combination with celecoxib (30% and 33% reduction, respectively). An effect on osteosarcoma tumor implantation rates was noted in mice receiving doxycycline alone and in combination with celecoxib (12.5% and 6.25% reduction, respectively). Established osteosarcoma and rhabdomyosarcoma tumors were inhibited only by combination therapy (36% and 55%, respectively). A higher proportion of osteosarcoma tumors in the combination therapy group had more than 50% necrosis (3/7) when compared with control tumors (0/8). Antitumor effects did not correlate with PGE2 levels, suggesting the observed interaction with doxycycline was due to previously described non-enzymatic effects of celecoxib. CONCLUSIONS: The authors' preclinical data suggest that the combination of inexpensive, nontoxic, oral COX-2 and MMP inhibitors may be useful for the treatment of some types of solid tumors.