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SET domain and mariner transposase fusion gene (SETMAR; METNASE)

In vitro and mouse studies suggest ciprofloxacin could help sensitize tumors to chemotherapy. A screen for small molecules that inhibit the domain of METNASE responsible for DNA damage repair function identified compounds, including the generic antibiotic ciprofloxacin, that blocked METNASE-mediated DNA cleavage. In human lung and colon cancer colony-forming assays, ciprofloxacin plus 5-fluorouracil inhibited the cells' ability to repair chemotherapy-induced DNA damage and decreased colony formation compared with either treatment alone. In mice with human lung cancer xenografts, ciprofloxacin plus cisplatin decreased tumor growth compared with either treatment alone. Next steps include clinical trials.

SciBX 5(45); doi:10.1038/scibx.2012.1179
Published online Nov. 15, 2012

Patent applications filed; available for licensing

Williamson, E.A. et al. Cancer Res.; published online Oct. 22, 2012;
Contact: Robert Hromas, University of Florida, Gainesville, Fla.