Author(s): Lissoni P, Messina G, Rovelli F
Abstract Share this page
Abstract Aging and advanced cancer are characterized by similar neuroendocrine and immune deficiencies; the most important of them consist of diminished nocturnal production of the pineal hormone melatonin (MLT) and decreased production of IL-2. At present, however, it is known that the pineal gland may produce indole hormones other than MLT. The most investigated of them is represented by 5-methoxy-tryptamine (5-MTT), which may exert antitumor, anticachectic, and immunomodulating effects under experimental conditions, in addition to those effects produced by MLT itself. In an attempt to obtain some preliminary data in human subjects about the potential therapeutic properties of 5-MTT, three different studies of 5-MTT have been carried out in advanced solid tumor patients. The first study of MLT plus 5-MTT included 14 thrombocytopenic cancer patients who did not respond to MLT alone. In the second study we have compared the clinical efficacy of MLT plus 5-MTT in a group of 25 untreatable metastatic cancer patients to the results obtained in a control group of 25 cancer patients receiving MLT alone. Finally, the third study of MLT plus 5-MTT included 14 untreatable metastatic cancer patients who did not respond to MLT alone. In all of these studies, MLT and 5-MTT were given orally at the level of 20 mg/day in the evening and at 5 mg/day during the period of maximum light. A normalization of platelet number was achieved by MLT plus 5-MTT in 5 of 14 (36\%) thrombocytopenic cancer patients who did not respond to MLT alone. The percentage of disease control obtained by MLT plus 5-MTT in untreatable metastatic cancer patients was significantly higher than that achieved by MLT alone (15/25 [60\%] vs. 8/25 [32\%], P < 0.05). Finally, the association of 5-MTT with MLT induced disease stabilization in 4 of 14 (29\%) untreatable metastatic cancer patients who did not respond to MLT alone.
This article was published in Curr Aging Sci
and referenced in Endocrinology & Metabolic Syndrome