A team from the University of Zurich discovered that antidepressants, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), could slow pancreatic and colon cancer growth in mice. Furthermore, in some cases, when antidepressants are combined with immunotherapy, the tumor could entirely disappear. Because the drugs the researchers used in their study are already FDA-approved, they could rapidly be available for cancer patients if human clinical trials confirmed the findings from the animal studies. The study was published in Science Translational Medicine.
Another animal study led by a team from the University of British Columbia showed that a drug used in cancer care could reinstate memory in mice with Alzheimer’s disease. The drug named Axitinib is FDA-approved to treat cancer. However, clinical trials are needed to see if the drug will show the same promising results in humans. The study was published in The Lancet.