Chemoprevention of neuroblastoma: progress and promise beyond uncertainties

Natarajan Aravindan, Mohan Natarajan, Dinesh Babu Somasundaram, Sheeja Aravindan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Neuroblastoma is the most common extracranial solid tumor in children and comprises one-tenth of all childhood cancer deaths. The current clinical therapy for this deadly disease is multimodal, involving an induction phase with alternating regimens of high-dose chemotherapeutic drugs and load reduction surgery; a consolidation phase with more intensive chemotherapy, radiotherapy, and stem cell transplant; and a maintenance phase with immunotherapy and immune-activating cytokine treatment. Despite such intensive treatment, children with neuroblastoma have unacceptable life quality and survival, warranting preventive measures to regulate the cellular functions that orchestrate tumor progression, therapy resistance, metastasis, and tumor relapse/recurrence. Globally, active efforts are underway to identify novel chemopreventive agents, define their mechanism(s) of action, and assess their clinical benefit. Some chemoprevention strategies (e.g., retinoids, difluoromethylornithine) have already been adopted clinically as part of maintenance phase therapy. Several agents are in the pipeline, while many others are in preclinical characterization. Here we review the classes of chemopreventive agents investigated for neuroblastoma, including cellular events targeted, mode(s) of action, and the level of development. Our review: (i) highlights the pressing need for new and improved chemopreventive strategies for progressive neuroblastoma; (ii) lists the emerging classes of chemopreventive agents for neuroblastoma; and (iii) recognizes the relevance of targeting dynamically evolving hallmark functions of tumor evolution (e.g., survival, differentiation, lineage transformation). With recent gains in the understanding of tumor evolution processes and preclinical and clinical efforts, it is our strong opinion that effective chemopreventive strategies for aggressive neuroblastoma are a near reality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberA13
JournalJournal of Cancer Metastasis and Treatment
Volume9
DOIs
StatePublished - 2023

Keywords

  • apopt
  • chemoprevention
  • DFMO
  • Neuroblastoma
  • phytochemicals
  • polyphenols
  • retinoids
  • secondary and tertiary chemopreventive
  • terpenes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology

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