Objective Drug repurposing is an alternative development pathway that utilizes the properties of drugs approved for other diseases and builds on available safety and pharmacological data to develop the drug as a potential treatment for other diseases. A literature-based approach was performed to identify drug repurposing opportunities in cervical cancer to inform future research and trials. Methods We queried PubMed for each drug included in two databases (ReDO_DB and CDcervix_DB, which include 300+ non-cancer drugs and 200+ cancer drugs not used in cervical cancer, respectively) and manually assessed all abstracts for relevance and activity in cervix cancer, and type of evidence. Subsequently, we also performed a search of clinical trial databases where we generated a list of registered trials in cervical cancer with all drugs from our databases. Results Of the 534 drugs from both databases, 174 (33%) had at least one relevant abstract or registered trial in cervical cancer. 94 (18%) drugs had at least human data available, and 52 (10%) drugs were evaluated in registered trials. To prioritize drugs to consider for future trials, all 174 drugs were further assessed for strength of scientific rationale, feasibility for integration in cervical cancer standard of care, evidence of radiosensitization, and potential mechanism of action. Out of the 174 drugs, 38 (22%) potential drug candidates were selected. Conclusion This study resulted in a list of candidate drugs for potential evaluation in cervical cancer. Many drugs might warrant additional (pre)clinical investigation, which could be done in a coordinated manner using platform trials.
The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any
funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.