The purpose of the present study was to develop a new method of chemoembolization to improve the therapeutic effectiveness and safety profile of cancer treatment. A chemoembolization approach was designed for human solid tumors using resorbable calcium-phosphate ceramic microspheres loaded with an agent anti-angiogenic to tumor vasculature in vivo. The human uterine sarcoma cell line FU-MMT-3 was used in this study because this tumor is aggressive and also exhibits a poor response to radiotherapy or any chemotherapy currently used. The calcium-phosphate ceramic microspheres loaded with TNP-470, an anti-angiogenic agent, were injected into FU-MMT-3 xenografts in nude mice three times per week for 8weeks. The treatment using TNP-470-loaded microspheres suppressed tumor growth, compared to treatment with TNP-470 alone, microspheres alone, and the control. The mean tumor weight after treatment using TNP-470-loaded microspheres was significantly lower than that after treatment with microspheres alone. These ceramic microspheres were remarkably embolized in tumor microvessels as well as in the feeding arteries and a significant reduction of intratumoral vascularity was also demonstrated following treatment with TNP-470-loaded microspheres. Severe loss of body weight was not observed in any mice treated with the TNP-470-loaded microspheres, compared to treatment with TNP-470 alone. These results suggest that targeting tumor vasculature in human uterine sarcoma using calcium-phosphate microspheres might be more effective and safer than the treatment that employs anti-angiogenic agent alone. This new chemoembolization method incorporating an anti-angiogenic agent may contribute to the effective treatment of locally advanced or recurrent solid tumors.
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