Fenben, a medication used to treat parasitic diseases in animals, is being touted by some as a cure for cancer. This is despite the fact that Health Canada lists anthelmintics (medicines for parasites in animals) as not being safe or effective for humans.
Fenbendazole acts as an antiparasitic agent and is used to treat gastrointestinal parasites such as pinworms, giardiasis, roundworms, hookworms and Taenia solium. It also shows anticancer activity in animal models. It inhibits the polymerization of tubulin, one of the components of microtubules, which form part of the cytoskeleton and provide structure and shape to cells .
Several studies have demonstrated that fenbendazole exhibits in vitro and in vivo antitumor activity. For example, Dogra et al. found that fenbendazole induces cell death by suppressing RAS-related signaling pathway expression in human lung cancer cells with KRAS mutation, and that it significantly shrinks tumor size of athymic nu/nu mice after oral administration of 1 mg/mouse per day of fenbendazole.
Furthermore, fenbendazole induces G2/M arrest and apoptosis via p53-p21 pathways in 5-FU sensitive SNU-C5 and resistant SNU-C5/5-FUR CRC cells. It induces mainly apoptosis, but partially necroptosis and autophagy, in 5-FU-sensitive CRC cells.
To evaluate the in vivo efficacy of fenbendazole for cancer, we developed a novel fenbendazole formulation consisting of FEN and RAPA at a molar ratio of 1:2 loaded into mPEG-b-PCL micelles. The encapsulation efficiency and drug loading capacity of these micelles were assessed by in vitro permeability, cell viability, and cytotoxicity assays. fenben for cancer