Fenben for humans is a drug that has been shown to have cancer-fighting chemicals and to alter many molecular pathways to slow down and eventually destroy the growth of tumor cells. This process occurs by a variety of mechanisms, including microtubule disruption, dephosphorylation of histone H3 and H4, interference with glucose uptake and the expression of GLUT transporters, as well as cell cycle arrest.
A recently published scientific paper revealed that fenbendazole (FZ) exhibits antitumor effects in human cancer cell lines and xenograft models, both in vitro and in vivo. It also showed that it was effective against a common type of non-small cell lung cancer, KRAS-mutant. Its antitumor activity is mainly attributed to its ability to stabilize WT p53, provide moderate microtubule disruption, interfere with glucose uptake and the expression of hexokinase (HK II), as well as target cell cycle arrest.
This is one of a group of anthelminthic benzimidazole carbamate (BZ) drugs that have been repositioned as potential cancer treatment agents. Originally, these drugs were used to treat parasitic diseases and worms in a variety of animals such as mammals, fish, birds, and reptiles. They are known to interact with a specific location on tubulin, similar to that of colchicine, but they differ in their structural modifications and cannot be used as chemotherapeutic drugs in place of other vinca alkaloids. However, they can be utilized to boost the efficacy of radiation therapy, surgery, berberine, sodium dichloroacetate (DCA), and other conventional chemotherapeutic treatments.
Pure fenbendazole is an oral medication that has been approved for use in humans to treat parasitic worms, such as ascarids, whipworms, hookworms, and a single species of tapeworm called Taenia pisiformis. It is absorbed through the digestive tract, metabolized by the liver, and excreted primarily via feces with a small amount excreted in urine. It is also used to treat parasitic infections in animals, such as pheasants, and to control cryptococcus infection in humans.
It was found that a diet containing 150 ppm FZ significantly inhibited the growth of EMT6 tumors in BALB/c mice, and that the effect was not impaired by irradiation of the tumors. In addition, a diet containing 50 ppm FZ did not affect the growth of unirradiated or irradiated tumors. These results indicate that FZ poses minimal risk to pheasants when administered extra-label to them as part of the treatment of a parasitic disease or for research purposes.
Our results demonstrate that fenbendazole is safe to use in pheasants when used in an extra-label manner and provides an opportunity for the development of a new veterinary medicine that can be used to control parasitic infections in these large animals. Moreover, our data can be used to guide the establishment of appropriate withdrawal intervals for pheasants after extra-label fenbendazole sulfone residues have been found in their tissues. This information can be used to determine the appropriate minimum withdrawal interval for pheasants following the administration of fenbendazole for human parasitic diseases and to determine how conservative the withdrawal interval should be after extra-label fenbendazole is administered to pheasants for the purpose of cancer research.