Williams Cancer Institute



When the pharmaceutical company Merck first marketed a phosphate salt under the brand name of Januvia in 2006, they probably never thought it would turn out to have powerful anti-cancer properties. That’s because the drug, generically known as Sitigliptin, was an effective treatment for diabetes. Essentially, what it does is inhibits an enzyme called dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (DIPP-4). DPP-4 inhibits gastrointestinal hormones that play a critical role in insulin release; thus, Sitigliptin has been quite effective in controlling diabetes.

DIPP-4 doesn’t just contribute to diabetes, however. It also helps tumors to survive and grow. It’s so effective in helpingtumors grow, in fact, that the tumors themselves appear to increase the production of DIPP-4 as a protective mechanism— think of DIPP-4 as yet another line of defense for tumors. DIPP-4 breaks down and deactivates cytokines, substances that stimulate the immune system, and help immune cells to migrate to areas of inflammation, which includes tumors.

So when treating a patient for cancer, it helps to increase cytokines, and decrease DIPP-4. And now we’ve found a way to do just that. In a study at the Institut Pasteur in France in 2015,16 researcher Matthew Arnold and his team found that by giving Sitigliptin to mice orally the cytokine CXCL10 increased, which helped attract T cells, NK and dendritic cells to the areas around the tumor, thereby inhibiting the growth of the tumor. More importantly, Sitigliptin inhibited DIPP-4 production and when combined with the immune checkpoint blockers like the CTLA-4 and anti-PD-1 drugs, there was a complete cure in the animal model.

Consequently, when treating patients for cancer, using the combination of anti-CTLA-4 and anti PD-1 medications, I generally prescribe a four-week supply of 25 to 50mg of Sitigliptin taken by mouth starting on the day of ablation or immunotherapy. I have them take the medication for seven days, then go off it for seven days, then go back on it for another seven days, continuing to rotate seven days on and seven days off until the four-week supply is gone.
But that’s not all I give my patients. Believe it or not, Viagra, Cialis and Levitra can do more than just save your sex life. These drugs just may save your entire life.

Reference: Jason R. Williams, 15 Oct 2019, The Immunotherapy Revolution: The Best New Hope For Saving Cancer Patients’ Lives, https://williamscancerinstitute.com/the-immunotherapy-revolution

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

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