Here is what’s new with testicular cancer. There has been a breakthrough with a new class of chemotherapy drugs, called endonuclease inhibitors. One such medication, which has been researched in Russia and Germany, was called “Ukrain”. It contains alkaloids from the plant greater celandine. Ref. 3 describes the biochemical mechanism of the antitumor activity. Ref. 4 reports regarding a 2.5-year clinical experience with a group of 76 incurable cancer patients regarding Ukrain cancer treatment in Germany. Seminoma patients had the best response rate with 75% responding with a complete disappearance of the tumor and another 25% experiencing a partial remission.
Apoptosis of testicular cancer cells
Several researchers pointed out that Ukrain’s mechanism of action is by stimulating apoptosis of testicular cancer cells. It will only be a matter of time before this type of medication is incorporated into the arsenal of other chemotherapeutic agents as it appears to lack the toxicity of standard chemotherapeutic agents.
However, like with all other effective medications, proper clinical trials have to be done by reputable Cancer Clinics in North America, before the FDA can give approval to such newer medications. However, having said so, the FDA has approved a similar medicine, the tyrosine kinase inhibitor Gleevec, in record time for the leukemia, CML.
Hormone therapy for testicular cancer
Other newer developments are hormone therapy. It is best to measure the hormone status of the cancer patient and to replace what hormones are missing with bio-identical hormones (Ref. 7 and 8). As explained in Ref. 9 and 10, which is contrary to the popular medical opinion testosterone levels are low in prostate cancer, but often also with testicular cancer. It is wise to check hormone levels including testosterone levels, estrogen levels and progesterone levels with saliva tests or blood tests. The estrogen to testosterone ratio should exceed 1:20. This is important particularly in men with elevated body mass index readings. Progesterone is an important 5-alpha-reductase inhibitor and works on “apoptosis” of tumor cells, so it is best to see all of these hormones balanced. This topic has also been discussed elsewhere from a prostate cancer prevention point of view.
1. Cancer: Principles &Practice of Oncology.4th edition. Edited by Vincent T. DeVita, Jr. et al. Lippincott, Philadelphia,PA, 1993. Chapter on Cancer of the Testis.
2. Cancer: Principles&Practice of Oncology. 5th edition, volume 1. Edited by Vincent T. DeVita, Jr. et al. Lippincott-Raven Publ., Philadelphia,PA, 1997. Chapter on Cancer of the Testis.
3. Votrin II et al. Drugs Exp Clin Res 2000;26(5-6):267-273.
4. B Aschhoff Drugs Exp Clin Res 2000;26(5-6):249-252.
5. Conn’s Current Therapy 2004, 56th ed., Copyright © 2004 Elsevier
6. Ferri: Ferri’s Clinical Advisor: Instant Diagnosis and Treatment, 2004 ed., Copyright © 2004 Mosby, Inc
7. Dr. John R. Lee and Virginia Hopkins: “Hormone Balance Made Simple – The Essential How-to Guide to Symptoms, Dosage, Timing, and More”. Wellness Central, NY, 2006
8. Thierry Hertoghe, M.D.: “The Hormone Solution – Stay Younger Longer With Natural Hormone And Nutrition Therapies.” Three Rivers Press, New York , 2002
9. John R. Lee: “Hormone Balance for Men – What your Doctor May Not Tell You About Prostate Health and Natural Hormone Supplementation”, © 2003 by Hormones Etc.
10. Abraham Morgentaler, MD “Testosterone for Life – Recharge your vitality, sex drive, muscle mass and overall health”, McGraw-Hill, 2008