PEMF therapy for drug resistant cancer may soon be a reality. Cancer therapies are often presented to the patients in a Hobson’s choice type of approach. They either follow conventional therapy or alternative therapies which often feel like an impossible choice, particularly when most people when faced with a life-threatening condition, would choose to do everything they possibly can. Now cancer patients don’t have to make a choice between chemotherapy and PEMF therapy.
For the first time the FDA has approved the use of tumor treating fields for the treatment of some types of brain cancer in conjunction with surgery, chemotherapy and radiation.
There have been major strides in studying the effects of electric and magnetic fields in the possible treatment of cancer over the last few years. Some of these studies were outlined in our article “Pemf in cancer therapy – Pemf could be a promising modality.” Most of these studies have focused on the use of low frequency therapy as a treatment modality on its own, but now there are studies that indicate that a combination of PEMF and chemotherapy could be an excellent option for cancer patients, particularly those with chemo-resistant cancers.
With the emergence of drug resistant and multidrug resistant cancers, scientists have been frantically searching for ways to re-sensitize cancers to drugs which offer some hope for cancer patients. Enhancing the effects of chemotherapy drugs like cisplatin, doxorubicin, daunorubicin, 5-fluorouracil (Adrucil) and mitomycin C and the ability re-sensitize cancer cells to these drugs, may offer a novel approach to cancer therapy and new treatment options for cancer patients who have developed drug resistance.
In summary, studies have found that:
- PEMF sensitized fibrosarcoma and hepatocellular carcinoma to mitomycin C
- Low frequency EMF sensitized cisplatin-resistant ovarian adenocarcinoma
- Pulsed magnetic fields enhanced the potency of daunorubicin in human carcinoma cell lines
- PEMF improved the effects of doxorubicin in Osteosarcoma
- 50Hz low frequency exposure enhanced the antiproliferative effects of 5-fluorouracil in breast cancer
The great news is that not only did PEMF therapy support and promote the efficacy of chemotherapy, but PEMF has already been approved as a pain therapy and the MA200 is an approved medical device in South Africa. PEMF therapy has also been shown to have an excellent safety profile with almost no adverse events being reported in thousands of clinical trials on pain and other conditions.
Adding PEMF therapy to a cancer and chemotherapy protocol poses very few, if any risks at all, and can provide numerous benefits for a cancer patient. The frequencies used in the studies are all available on the MA200. Finally, PEMF therapy is a cost-effective therapy for the cancer patient, with options from as little as R499 per month for the rental of an MA200 device.
PEMF therapy for drug resistant cancer - Summary of Studies
The following are summaries of the studies mentioned above, with references to those studies on Pubmed.
PEMF therapy for drug resistant cancer - PMF sensitized fibrosarcoma and hepatocellular carcinoma to mitomycin C
An article published in the Japanese Journal of Cancer research, investigated the effects of PMF therapy in combination with mitomycin C for the treatment of fibrosarcoma and hepatocellular carcinoma.
WKA rats were exposed to a frequency of 200Hz immediately after IV injections of mitomycin C. The survival rates of the rats were recorded. Cultured cells were also used to study the efficacy of PMF and mitomycin C, and a combination of the two.
Survival rates of the untreated rats were 0% in the non-treated group, 34% in the group treated with mitomycin C only, and 47% for the PMF only group. For the group who received a combination of PMF and mitocycin C, the survival rate was 77%. The combination increased lifespan of the PMF mitomycin C group which was significantly prolonged at 17,6%. The efficiencies of the cells in the cultures of both cell lines were also significantly suppressed in the combination therapy group when compared with those in the other single therapy groups.
This study clearly indicates the possibility that PEMF therapy could improve and enhance the efficacy of drugs like mitomycin C.
PEMF therapy for drug resistant cancer - Low frequency EMF sensitizes cisplatin-resistant ovarian adenocarcinoma
Platinum based drugs like cisplatin often form the first line of therapy for cancers including testicular, bladder, esophageal cancer, lung cancer, mesothelioma, brain tumors, neuroblastoma ovarian and colorectal tumors but the use of cisplatin also often results in chemotherapy resistant cancers.
In the search for a way to re-sensitize cancers to cisplatin, researchers investigated the use of extra-low frequency electromagnetic field therapy on cisplatin-resistant A2780 ovarian cancer cells. Cells were exposed to 200hz at 50 Gauss.
Researchers found that EL-EMF decreased proliferation of the cells independently of cisplatin. They also saw a decreased proliferation rate of 40 % in the cisplatin only group but the cells treated with a combination of cisplatin and EL-EMF showed a 71 % decrease in viability in rats. They also saw a large increase in late apoptosis in the combination group as indicated in the graph below:
Histogram from percentage of live and dead cells from AO/PI staining for A2780 cells, data are presented as means (±SD)
The study concluded that EL-EMF therapy at 200Hz can help to sensitize cancer cells to cisplatin and improved the efficacy of cisplatin.
PEMF therapy for drug resistant cancer - Pulsed magnetic fields enhance the potency of daunorubicin in human carcinoma cell lines
Researchers studied the effects of PMF pulses of 250Hz on multidrug resistant human carcinoma cells. They inoculated mice with a multidrug resistant form of human carcinoma. They then treated the resultant tumors with pulsed magnetic therapy only or a combination of PMF therapy and daunorubicin.
Researchers found that amongst the various groups, significant differences in the tumor volume were found between PMF + saline and PMF + daunorubicin groups at 39 days and 42 days. No mice died in the PMF alone group, and no toxicity attributable to PMF was found during the experimental period.
The results indicated that the efficacy of daunorubicin was potentiated in vitro by PMF exposure when PMF exposure occurred in the presence of the drug.
PEMF therapy for drug resistant cancer - PEMF improves the effects of doxorubicin in Osteosarcoma
In another study, researchers studied the potential drug resistance modification effects of PEMF stimulation in multidrug resistant mouse osteosarcoma. PEMF stimulation reversed doxorubicin resistance. The concluded that PEMFs reversed the doxorubicin resistance of the MOS/ADR1 cells by inhibiting P-gp function. The results suggested that PEMFs may be useful as a local treatment for multidrug resistant osteosarcoma.
PEMF therapy for drug resistant cancer - 50Hz enhances the antiproliferative effects of 5-fluorouracil in breast cancer
Finally, researchers explored the effects of pre-exposure to 50Hz to help to reduce resistance to 5-fluorouracil to enhance efficacy of the drug. The study explored the combined effect of 50 Hz-EMFs and 5-FU in the treatment of breast cancer.
Researchers found that pre-exposure to 50 Hz-EMFs enhanced the antiproliferative effect of 5-FU in breast cancer cell line MCF-7 in a dose-dependent manner but did not affect normal human breast epithelial cell lines.
They concluded that the enhanced cytotoxic activity of 5-FU on MCF7 cells through promoting entry into the S phase of the cell cycle via exposure to 50 Hz-EMFs, may provide a novel method of cancer treatment based on the combinatorial use of 50 Hz-EMFs and chemotherapy.