Effect of rapamycin-induced tumor vessel thrombosis combined with docetaxel in non-small-cell lung cancer

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Lung cancer remains incurable in many cases despite current chemotherapies. We explored an approach combining a recently described antiangiogenic drug, rapamycin, with standard docetaxel cytotoxic therapy on the growth of non-small-cell lung cancer. Rapamycin alone inhibited tumor growth and upregulated apoptosis, with more pronounced effects when rapamycin and docetaxel were combined. Tumor vessel endothelium damage and thrombosis was evident with rapamycin treatment; this was concomitant with decreased microvessel density. In contrast, docetaxel was not antiangiogenic and did not reduce proliferation in tumors, despite its known cytotoxicity. Our data represent a new promising therapeutic regimen against non-small-cell lung cancer.

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