Category: News

Repurposed medicines and COVID-19

The coronavirus pandemic has put drug repurposing in the spotlight in a way that has never happened before. If shown to be effective in COVID-19, existing medicines with known safety profiles can be brought to clinical use quickly and will likely offer a more rapid hope of tackling the virus than a vaccine. In nearly all cases, use of existing drugs will also offer a highly affordable solution.

Many Artificial Intelligence and bioinformatics studies are cross-referencing vast numbers of different medicines with new information about the biology of SARS CoV-2 (the virus which causes COVID-19) and dynamic clinical trials are taking place all over the world. These trials have secured regulatory approval far more quickly than would normally be the case and many have been designed to allow for rapid review of information so that the most promising agents can be prioritised.

More research is required before various medicines can be widely prescribed as COVID-19 prophylaxis or treatment, but the direction of travel is encouraging.

As this data develops, it is interesting to note that various druggable targets associated with the COC Protocol medications in cancer (e.g. glycolysis, lipid accumulation, inhibition of pro-inflammatory cytokines) also appear to be relevant in COVID-19.

Please see below for further reading.

The SARS-CoV-2 Transcriptional Metabolic Signature in Lung Epithelium

https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3650499

 

Metformin Treatment Was Associated with Decreased Mortality in COVID-19 Patients with Diabetes in a Retrospective Analysis

https://www.ajtmh.org/content/journals/10.4269/ajtmh.20-0375

 

Metformin in COVID-19: A possible role beyond diabetes

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7190487/

 

Modulation of Cytokine and Cytokine Receptor/Antagonist by Treatment with Doxycycline and Tetracycline in Patients with Dengue Fever

https://www.hindawi.com/journals/jir/2011/370872/

 

Further aspects of doxycycline therapy in COVID‐19

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/dth.13810

 

A Combination of Ivermectin and Doxycycline Possibly Blocks the Viral Entry and Modulates the Innate Immune Response in COVID-19 Patients

https://chemrxiv.org/articles/preprint/A_Combination_of_Ivermectin_and_Doxycycline_Possibly_Blocks_the_Viral_Entry_and_Modulate_the_Innate_Immune_Response_in_COVID-19_Patients/12630539

 

In-hospital use of statins is associated with a reduced risk of mortality among individuals with COVID-19

https://www.cell.com/cell-metabolism/fulltext/S1550-4131(20)30316-8

There are many reasons Care Oncology has decided to utilize Mebendazole

There are many reasons Care Oncology has decided to utilize Mebendazole as part of the complete COC Protocol. The article below is an extensive review of the current literature.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6769799/

In addition:

We have selected Mebendazole in the COC Protocol because:

1. It has a human license
2. It is already demonstrated as safe in humans
3. It is already demonstrated as safe in humans with cancer
4. Has the right anticancer mechanisms of action
5. Has a significant amount of clinical data in cancer
6. Has cancer data that is covered by the existing dosage schedule
7. Can be prescribed and monitored by clinicians
8. Has the largest amount of scientific and medical data on its use in cancer

The other Benzimidazole drugs may have utility in cancer but it is only Mebendazole that satisfies all our criteria about both efficacy data patient safety and history of use.

Dr Ndabezinhle Mazibuko MBBS talks about the COC Protocol and its clinical study.

Validating the Outcomes of the COC Protocol

Validation Institute LogoWe brought Care Oncology to the United States almost four years ago. Since then, and because of COVID-19 now, the value offered by drug repurposing has captivated the public’s attention, as highlighted by this recent article in the New York Times.  As one of the first companies to offer a combination of repurposed drugs as an adjuvant cancer therapy, we promised to do two things: Maintain a consistent formulation that is able to be safely administrated, and second, maintain a consistent formulation so the outcome can be measured and validated. Unlike some clinics that offer repurposed drugs for cancer, at Care Oncology we have embarked on wide-ranging, real-world clinical trial so patients and oncologists can see our outcomes for themselves. Last year, we published our first outcome data on glioblastoma.

No one disputes the fact that health care in the United States is in a state of crisis. We spend far more than any other industrialized nation on healthcare (20% of GDP versus 11% of GDP) and get less. However, we remain optimistic that this is changing. The market place is responding to the crisis. Innovative, value-based companies are being created like never before. Companies that offer proven value for the money paid.

Moreover, recognizing the need for responsible third-party validation of these newly formed health care companies has become critically important. The Validation Institute has become the trusted name to lead this critical mission. Their mission is to thoroughly vet health care companies so the general public and payers know if they offer recognized and proven value for their patients or not.

Today, we are incredibly proud to announce that we have passed the Validation Institute’s extremely rigorous validation process of data analysis, outcome claims, and value calculation. We have worked hard to get to this point. Early on, we recognized the tremendous value a responsibly delivered program of repurposed drugs offered to cancer patients, yet, it was not being offered at scale. Four years ago, we set out to change this knowing it was a marathon, not a sprint.

Today is a milestone. Tomorrow, we have even bigger aspirations. We have a clarity of mission like never before, and an unbridled energy to keep changing oncology for the better.

View Care Oncology at the Validation Institute

The COC Protocol during the COVID-19 outbreak

We hope you and your family are well and keeping safe. 

We are pleased to report that all our staff are currently in good health and we continue to run normally with all appointments taking place.

The COC Protocol during the COVID-19 outbreak

With this note, we felt it would be helpful to address a question which our doctors have been asked by a number of patients recently: is it useful to continue with the COC Protocol in a scenario where standard of care treatments such as surgery, chemotherapy and immunotherapy are being paused or postponed?

The short answer is that yes, we believe it is. The COC Protocol down-regulates cancer cell metabolism (or in other words, it “starves” cancer cells) and therefore may be beneficial to you during a time where there is a wait for your standard of care to start or to resume.

While it is always our preference for the COC Protocol to run alongside standard of care wherever possible, the research literature and our own analysis of our Glioblastoma brain tumor cohort shows there is the potential for it to play a supportive role when administered as standalone therapy too – click here to read: Frontiers: A case study in Glioblastoma.

We would also like to further reassure you that none of the COC medications cause immunosuppression, and where it is safe and appropriate, our physicians will actively consider upward dose adjustments, particularly in a situation where systemic treatment has been interrupted. 

Interval blood tests and other concerns

We understand that it may currently be difficult to arrange your usual follow up blood tests at your hospital or GP surgery and if this is the case, please contact us to discuss your situation. In line with our usual advice, we also ask that you contact us if you think you may be experiencing any adverse effects, symptoms of an infection/other symptoms of concern or have any general questions regarding your COC treatment at this time. 

COVID-19 driving forward research into existing drugs

One silver lining of the current virus outbreak is that the spotlight is being shone on repurposing of medicines in a way that has never happened before. Different groups of researchers are busy evaluating how existing licensed medications could be usefully deployed in COVID-19 infection. For example, the following article from a well-respected French bioinformatics organisation examines possible druggable targets in COVID-19 and it is interesting to note that both metformin and atorvastatin are mentioned as two of the possible 97 agents that require further study in this context – click here to read: Repositioning common approved drugs against COVID-19

This underscores that well-conducted, robust research into repurposed medicines is a logical and important therapeutic strategy in cancer and many other disease processes.

General Advice

CDC Guidelines: CDC guidelines

Cancer Research UK: CRUK – COVID-19

Finally, should you need to book a review or have any questions you’d like to discuss with our team, please get in touch with us at 1-800-392-1352, casemanager@careoncology.com.

A note from our Medical Director, Dr. Charles Meakin, Regarding the COVID-19 Virus

Amid the growing uncertainty related to the Coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak, Care Oncology would like to assure you that we are here for you during this challenging time.

All cancer patients, including our existing Care Oncology patients, may be concerned about best practices during this unprecedented time. For some patients, the risks associated with exposure to the virus and even moderate immune dysfunction may possibly present a more significant threat than a delay to your standard cancer therapy. You and your oncologist will need to decide if you can continue to receive your treatment given the strain that hospitals are under with treating people with the Coronavirus, or whether you should suspend your standard treatment for a while. Every individual situation is different, and these are personal decisions unique to your cancer aggressiveness, the local viral risk, available treatment resources, and you and your family’s wishes.

We are writing to confirm to you that the Care Oncology protocol should not cause immunosuppression nor should it change your risk to the COVID 19 virus. The Care Oncology protocol down-regulates the cancer cell metabolism (or starve the cancer cells) and may be beneficial to you during this time while you wait for your standard of care to start or to resume. The protocol should not impact your ability to fight off typical infections or this COVID 19 virus and may be helpful.

Through our online telemedicine platform, new or existing patients are evaluated via video conferencing without the need to travel to our clinics and to be exposed to the risks from the virus. Our medications are sent to your home in 2-4 days after the oncology consult to start therapy immediately. Our oncology nurses are on standby to promptly answer your questions, online or by telephone, for all our patients.

If you do become sick from the virus, and you find that you cannot take the Care Oncology medications, it is fine to stop them until you feel well enough to begin taking them again.

Throughout the world, every day, we are witnessing human kindness at its very best as people pull together and make sacrifices for the good of everyone else. At Care Oncology we recognize the unique challenges of today’s environment and have a team of Oncology doctors and nurses ready to serve your needs with coverage throughout the United States and most of Canada.

Sincerely,
Charles Meakin MD, MHA,
Care Oncology Chief Medical Officer
CareOncology.com

Interview with Travis Christofferson (Tripping Over The Truth)

Travis Christofferson Tripping Over the TruthTravis Christofferson , author of “Tripping Over The Truth,” sits down with Phil Mikan on their shared experiences with cancer treatment. Travis discusses his insights on doctor’s attitudes toward developing treatment methodology such as Care Oncology’s COC Protocol. Recorded: January 28, 2020 For more information, visit www.careoncology.com

Tripping over the Truth: How the Metabolic Theory of Cancer Is Overturning One of Medicine’s Most Entrenched Paradigms 1st Edition Available at Amazon

Curable: How an Unlikely Group of Radical Innovators is Trying to Transform our Health Care System Available at Amazon

Frustrated With The Healthcare System? Watch This

This is one of the most important podcasts I have ever recorded. Travis Christofferson speaks on how metabolic conditions lay the foundation for many of our disease states. With better treatment methodologies, and better thinking around the system at large, we can drastically reframe the way we look at our health. Healthcare is a daunting beast, physically, emotionally, and financially–with cancer sitting at the helm. In his two books Tripping Over The Truth and Curable Travis reveals actionable strategies for you and your loved ones to not only optimize your likelihood of survival, but reframe the disease paradigm and take greater control of your livelihood. Please share this podcast and Travis’ books with anyone you know who has ever been touched by cancer or many of the diseases we discuss on the podcast. Who knows, it might just save someone’s life.

-Aubrey Marcus

Travis Christofferson is a founder of Care Oncology US