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DON'T ARREST; DIVIDE AND CONQUER

Insights into old cancer drug give hints for designing new ones

By Anette Breindl
Science Editor

Friday, March 28, 2014
Scientists have come to a surprising conclusion about how Taxol works – one that might lead to the development of biomarkers that could predict which patients will benefit from the drug, and of better anti-mitotic agents. The study, which was published in the March 27, 2014, issue of Science Translational Medicine, is based on data from only six patients. But corresponding author Beth Weaver told BioWorld Today that “even with such a small sample size, we were able to fundamentally change our understanding of a drug that has been in use for 30 years” – an ability she attributed to the close cooperation of clinical and basic researchers on the project.

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