The drug dichloroacetate appears to target cancer cells, causing them to die. Its potency as a cancer killing agent has been tested in tissue cultures and mice, with very promising results. However, clinical trials need to be run. Since the drug is not patentable and can be produced very cheaply, pharmaceutical companies won't fund those trials.
Why isn't this story front-page news in every newspaper? Just because there's no pharmaceutical industry PR firm handling it? This Canadian scientific discovery has appeared in very, very newspapers, one among them being The National Post:
A simple molecule, used for decades to treat children with rare metabolic diseases, commits "immortal" cancer cells to a natural death and could soon be used to treat many forms of cancer, according to a new study.
University of Alberta researchers were excited to discover that dichloroacetate (DCA) causes regression in several cancers, including lung, breast and brain tumours.
"It's important for the future of cancer," said Dr. Evangelos Michelakis, a professor at the University of Alberta's department of medicine and an author of the study. (Source: Leong, Melissa. "Cancer finding hailed", National Post, January17, 2007)