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HomeminewsNew Drug Class for Retinoblastoma

New Drug Class for Retinoblastoma

Investigators have discovered a new class of drugs that may more effectively treat retinoblastoma, a cancer of the retina that develops in children.

The research was presented at the 2015 Annual Meeting of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) in the US State of Colorado in May.

Researchers used high-throughput screening to rapidly test 300 compounds for effectiveness against the eye cancer retinoblastoma. They identified a class of drugs called histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors that could selectively kill cancer cells and preserve normal cells.

Retinoblastoma develops most often in children under two years old. Though the disease has a high cure rate, more than half of children treated experience partial or complete loss of vision. New treatments that cure the eye cancer while preserving vision could improve the quality of life for children with the disease.