Rhenium compounds as anticancer agents
Metal-based anticancer agents, such as cisplatin, are used as gold standard cancer therapies. While these drugs are effective in eradicating malignant cells, their selectivity is poor, meaning that significant adverse effects are experienced during treatment through damage inflicted on healthy cells. Improved selectivity and targeted cancer therapies with minimal side effects are being sought. Many drugs have been developed which contain platinum, and other metals are now being developed as anticancer agents. Researchers at Curtin University developed a series of rhenium containing compounds that target cancerous cells and block their growth. These compounds are promising candidates for treatment of tumours with aggressive potential for metastasis (for example, pancreatic cancer). A library of molecular candidates have been synthesized, and structure-activity relationship to modulate selectivity and therapeutic potential has been explored.