Repurposing the Blood Pressure Drug Minoxidil for the Treatment of Recurrent Chemo-Resistant Ovarian Cancer
Principal Investigator: Dr. Margaret Liotta
Disease: Ovarian cancer
Research Description: Epithelial ovarian cancer is the most lethal among the gynecological cancers. In 2020, an estimated 21,750 new cases and 13,940 deaths will be reported. Ovarian cancer is usually diagnosed in advanced stage, with patients complaining of vague symptoms. While ovarian cancer is generally treatable with chemotherapy, recurrences are seen in 70% of patients with advanced disease, and effective treatments for these patients are lacking. Minoxidil is a readily available generic drug that has been used clinically worldwide to treat hypertension (oral) and promote hair growth (topical). It has a well-known pharmacological profile with minimal side effects in humans, and minoxidil has been found to arrest tumor growth of ovarian cancer in mice by facilitating DNA damage. Therefore, repurposing minoxidil for ovarian cancer could provide an excellent opportunity for patients who unfortunately do not have therapeutic options to treat this deadly disease. This clinical trial will evaluate the safety and clinical efficacy of oral minoxidil in patients with recurrent platinum resistant ovarian cancer. If successful, this research may lead to a new treatment that is convenient, inexpensive and safe for some of the sickest ovarian cancer patients.
Funding Partners: The Searle Funds at The Chicago Community Trust
CWR funding role: Primary funder