DCA website forced to stop selling drug by the FDA
A website selling an experimental cancer treatment has been ordered to stop supplying the drug by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
A notice on the DCA Site tells visitors that FDA agents have ordered the company to stop making and selling DCA (dichloroacetate), a drug that has been shown to shrink tumours in rats but has not yet been fully tested on humans.
Although researchers, including a team of scientists at the University of Alberta, have suggested that the drug might cause fewer side-effects than conventional cancer treatments, DCA is a known environmental pollutant and has been found to actually cause cancer in animals.
While it may yet prove to be a suitable cancer treatment, all drugs must be thoroughly tested in clinical trials to confirm their safety in humans.
Kate Law, Cancer Research UK's clinical trial director, commented: "Reports of people buying personal supplies of DCA from sources such as the internet were very worrying.
"Cancer Research UK strongly advised against this course of action, as DCA has not been fully tested in people and may be harmful when given to cancer patients.
"It is important that all new treatments are carefully investigated to make sure they are effective and safe for use in patients. DCA is no exception so we are pleased that the FDA has taken the decisive action to limit the sale of DCA over the internet."