Emerging therapeutic potential of anti-psychotic drugs in the management of human glioma: A comprehensive review

Muhamad N.A. Kamarudin and Ishwar Parhar _

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Oncotarget. 2019; 10:3952-3977. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.26994

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Muhamad N.A. Kamarudin1 and Ishwar Parhar1

1 Brain Research Institute Monash Sunway (BRIMS), Jeffrey Cheah School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Monash University Malaysia, Selangor, Malaysia

Correspondence to:

Ishwar Parhar,email: ishwar@monash.edu

Keywords: glioma; anti-psychotic drugs; typical anti-psychotic; atypical anti-psychotic; valproic acid

Received: January 01, 2019     Accepted: May 13, 2019     Published: June 11, 2019


Despite numerous advancements in the last decade, human gliomas such as astrocytoma and glioblastoma multiforme have the worst prognoses among all cancers. Anti-psychotic drugs are commonly prescribed to treat mental disorders among cancer patients, and growing empirical evidence has revealed their antitumor, anti-metastatic, anti-angiogenic, anti-proliferative, chemo-preventive, and neo-adjuvant efficacies in various in vitro, in vivo, and clinical glioma models. Anti-psychotic drugs have drawn the attention of physicians and researchers owing to their beneficial effects in the prevention and treatment of gliomas. This review highlights data on the therapeutic potential of various anti-psychotic drugs as anti-proliferative, chemopreventive, and anti-angiogenic agents in various glioma models via the modulation of upstream and downstream molecular targets involved in apoptosis, autophagy, oxidative stress, inflammation, and the cell cycle in in vitro and in vivo preclinical and clinical stages among glioma patients. The ability of anti-psychotic drugs to modulate various signaling pathways and multidrug resistance-conferring proteins that enhance the efficacy of chemotherapeutic drugs with low side-effects exemplifies their great potential as neo-adjuvants and potential chemotherapeutics in single or multimodal treatment approach. Moreover, anti-psychotic drugs confer the ability to induce glioma into oligodendrocyte-like cells and neuronal-like phenotype cells with reversal of epigenetic alterations through inhibition of histone deacetylase further rationalize their use in glioma treatment. The improved understanding of anti-psychotic drugs as potential chemotherapeutic drugs or as neo-adjuvants will provide better information for their use globally as affordable, well-tolerated, and effective anticancer agents for human glioma.

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