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# Non-absorbable iron chelators for the treatment of colorectal cancer

Byravan, Rama (2015)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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## Abstract

There is growing epidemiological and experimental evidence implicating excess luminal iron in the context of colorectal cancer. High levels of dietary iron is thought to aid carcinogenesis, due to the formation of reactive oxygen species from the redox cycling of iron, which can cause oxidative tissue damage and disrupt cellular signalling pathways. Hence, it is proposed that removal of this excess iron will suppress the development of this cancer.
A clinically used iron chelator deferasirox and a modified version of this ligand, were attempted to be conjugated onto biopolymers chitosan and alginate. These non-absorbable polymers were hypothesised to be undigested in the gastrointestinal tract, thus specifically capable of targeting and removing excess iron from the colon. These chelator incorporated polymer materials, be they conjugated polymers or functional material blends, were subsequently shown to have improved iron binding properties compared to the parent polymers. Culturing RKO colorectal cancer cells with iron and alginate-ligand material did not significantly affect intracellular iron uptake, however culturing RKO cells with iron and chitosan-ligand material elicited a suppression in iron mediated ferritin expression and overall intracellular iron status. Based on these $$in$$ $$vitro$$ results, that the material obtained from reaction of chitosan with ligand elicits the desired inhibition of iron uptake, the chitosan-ligand material was administered to a mouse model of colorectal cancer. Apc Hom Pten Hom mice show reduced mitosis and increased apoptosis of intestinal crypt cells, demonstrating anti-neoplastic activity by iron chelation.

Type of Work: Ph.D. thesis. Fossey , John and Teslepis, Chris Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Engineering & Physical Sciences School of Chemistry QD ChemistryRC0254 Neoplasms. Tumors. Oncology (including Cancer) University of Birmingham 6403
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