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Oxytocin Treatment for Breast Cancer

A new method of treating breast cancer using hormones may be under development by Atossa Healthcare. The company received a patent in 2005 for using carbetocin, a synthetic oxytocin drug developed to stop postpartum bleeding, and other long-lasting oxytocin compounds against breast cancer - as well as for psychiatric disorders such as autism and OCD.

According to the patent abstract,

Ideally, new therapeutic and prophylactic agents against breast cancer will target important biological pathways in breast cell growth and differentiation. With respect to developing new hormonal treatment strategies, a large number and variety of hormones and growth factors are thought to interact in complex pathways to influence breast cancer initiation and disease progression.

... Among the many hormonal regulatory factors that have been investigated as possible tools for regulating breast cell growth, differentiation and/or survival, the peptide hormone oxytocin has received recent interest as a potential growth modulating agent for breast cancer cells.

The patent notes studies in which oxytocin inhibited the growth of mouse mammary cells.

The drug can be administered by intravenous or intranasal injection, inhaled, placed under the skin, applied to the skin, or swallowed. The oatent says the preferrd method is for the patient to self-administer via nasal spray or powder.

Atossa Healthcare is owned by Nastech.