In a small pilot study, researchers at the University of Illinois and the University at Buffalo found that administering a combination of a brain-derived neurotoxin (BDNF) and the brain octanes oil (BOBO) significantly reduced the incidence of neurological symptoms in patients with advanced brain tumors.
The findings could be used as a basis for future therapies targeting the brain and helping to reduce the rate of brain tumor progression and death.
The study, published in the online journal Neurotoxicology and Teratology, found that patients treated with the brain-octane oil showed a statistically significant reduction in the frequency of seizures and behavioral problems.
The study also found that the dose of the brain oil decreased the amount of BDNF released into the bloodstream by the patient.
In addition, patients who received the combination of the two chemicals showed a significantly higher response to an intravenous (IV) ketogenic diet compared to those who received a placebo.
“These results demonstrate that we can apply the brain extract of the octane to control the progression of brain tumors in patients suffering from advanced brain cancers,” said senior author Joseph F. F. Zappala, MD, a professor of psychiatry at the UI and the lead author of the study.
“We are now able to safely deliver a mixture of brain- and brain-specific toxins to the brain to prevent brain tumors from progressing.”
In recent years, doctors have used extracts of the same chemical found in brain octanols for the treatment of multiple brain tumors, including multiple myeloma, colon cancer, and melanoma.
But while these treatments were well tolerated, they typically involved injections of a large dose of an anti-tumor drug, which has not been used in patients who have brain tumors since the discovery of the BDNF in the 1990s.
The researchers found that by administering the compound in the bloodstream, the brain tissue extracts have been shown to inhibit the release of the anti-cancer drug by about 30 percent.
The combination of brain octanoate and the compound also prevents the production of amyloid beta, which is associated with the development of the condition that leads to Alzheimer’s disease.
Dr. Zippala said the compound is also able to increase the amount and density of brain tissue and increase the number of neurons in the brain, which would decrease the risk of degeneration of brain cells.
“This is a promising compound for the prevention and treatment of brain disease,” he said.
“It will allow for much more controlled and effective treatments.”
The researchers said their study is one of the first studies to demonstrate the efficacy of the compound against brain tumor metastasis.
This is the first study to demonstrate a beneficial effect of brain extracts against metastasis, they said.
In future studies, the researchers plan to test the compound on more patients and evaluate the effects of the drug on other types of brain metastases.
The findings have some researchers asking if brain extracts could be added to standard treatments to prevent the spread of the disease.
But the researchers caution that this could lead to a new generation of treatments for brain tumors that may be far less effective.
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