The Colorado State University Animal Cancer Center is seeking owners of dogs diagnosed with bone cancer to participate in a study involving the combination of a new and an old cancer drug that may increase chemotherapy effectiveness without increasing unwanted side effects.
The study may eventually be useful for the treatment of both human and animal cancer, the cancer center says.
Under the study, a common chemotherapy drug, called doxorubicin or Adriamycin, is being combined with valproic acid, also called Depakote, a drug that’s been used to treat seizures in both dogs and humans.
Dogs in the study will receive valproic acid for several days before receiving a standard dose of doxorubicin. Veterinarians will be looking for common side effects of the drug such as liver issues and sleepiness to help identify the right combination.
“By combining these drugs, we think we may make chemotherapy more effective. We think they are stronger together,” Animal Cancer Center professor and researcher Douglas Thamm said.
“This study will allow us to help dogs with cancer and provide information that may be helpful in future human trials. Both of these drugs have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration for use in humans for many years, but we hope our research into their use in combination will help develop the information needed for the drugs to be considered as a treatment together,” Thamm said.
People interested in having their dog involved in the drug trial can contact the Animal Cancer Center at (970) 297-4195.
Dogs must undergo testing prior to the study to ensure that they are eligible and must meet certain other requirements. All treatments must be performed at Colorado State.