COX-2 Inhibitor Potent at Reducing Risk of Colorectal Polyps
Daily use of the COX-2 inhibitor celecoxib (Celebrex) significantly reduces the risk of precancerous polyps reoccurring in the colon or rectum, two research groups reported yesterday at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) annual meeting in Washington, D.C.
The results come from the Adenoma Prevention with Celecoxib (APC) Trial, which was jointly sponsored by NCI and Pfizer, and the Prevention of Colorectal Sporadic Adenomatous Polyps (PreSAP) with Celecoxib Trial, solely sponsored by Pfizer. The trials had more than 2,000 and 1,500 participants, respectively; all participants previously had colorectal polyps, called adenomas, removed.
In the APC trial, patients taking either of two doses of celecoxib twice a day for approximately 3 years had fewer new adenomas and fewer new advanced adenomas - those most likely to become malignant - than those on placebo. Participants on the 400 mg/day dose had greater reductions (45 percent fewer new adenomas and 66 percent fewer advanced adenomas) than those on the 200 mg/day dose (33 percent and 57 percent, respectively). Read more
Guest Update by Dr. John E. Niederhuber
Embracing Opportunities and Overcoming Challenges
There was palpable enthusiasm this week at the AACR annual meeting in Washington, D.C., and it was warranted, given the excellent quality of science being presented and the many exciting research opportunities emerging. The meeting comes at a time of significant leadership change at NCI. With the nomination of Dr. von Eschenbach to be FDA commissioner, there is the expected speculation and concern about future NCI leadership. A dip in NCI's budget adds worries that progress will be dampened. These are valid concerns that I addressed during my remarks on April 2 at AACR.
I'd like to congratulate Andy on the truly remarkable job he has done these past 4 years. The dedication and fervor that he brought to the director's position will be felt throughout NCI and the cancer community for years to come. The transition of NCI leadership and operational control following Andy's appointment as Acting FDA Commissioner has been achieved through both formal delegations of authority and day-to-day adjustments on the part of NCI leadership and staff and the broader community. The smoothness of this transition reflects our shared commitment to the urgency of our mission, and I appreciate the tremendous support you have given to NCI and to me. Read more