New drug could ‘improve effectiveness of radiotherapy’

14 May 2014

A new drug could potentially be used to improve the effectiveness of radiotherapy in stopping tumour growth, according to a new study from the University of Manchester.

Recently, scientists have become increasingly interested in using the body’s own immune system to attack cancerous cells. This method is popular as it is effective without the subsequent side-effects of chemotherapy.

Skin cancers have been successfully treated this way, by using a topical cream that recruits immune cells through a molecule known as toll-like receptor 7 (TLR7).

In the new study, scientists looked at a different molecule that activates TLR7, known as DSR-6434. Using mice models, they investigated the particle on its own and in combination with radiotherapy, and tested its effectiveness on tumours.

Professor Ian Stratford, lead author of the research, said: “We have already seen a strong immune system response from other immunotherapy agents in combination with radiation – this new agent appears to be even more potent.”

His team demonstrated that DSR-6434 combined with radiotherapy led to tumour shrinkage and increased long-term survival, as well as reducing the occurrence of secondary lung malignancies.

“These results strongly suggest that this sort of combination therapy should be evaluated in clinical trials with cancer patients,” the professor concluded.

Posted by Jeanette Royston

Health News is provided by Adfero in collaboration with Spire Healthcare. Please note that all copy above is ©Adfero Ltd. and does not reflect views or opinions of Spire Healthcare unless explicitly stated. Additional comments on the page from individual Spire consultants do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of other consultants or Spire Healthcare.

Find a treatment, test or scan available at:


Find a consultant

Use one or more of the options below to search for a consultant and link through to view their Spire profile.


Let us help you

fill out this form and we will get back to you:

Please select a hospital

We can call you

Please enter your details below and we will call you back.

What is the aim of your enquiry?

Please select a hospital

If we are unable to reach you by phone, please include your email address so that we can get in touch...



© Spire Healthcare Group plc (2016)