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Abstract

MIGHT TRACE AMOUNTS OF ACTINOMYCIN GIVEN OVER AN EXTENDED PERIOD OF TIME PROVE TO BE A POWERFUL ANTICANCER CHEMOTHERAPEUTIC REGIMEN?

Henry M. Sobell*

ABSTRACT

This article presents our current understanding of how actinomycin D binds to DNA and exerts its mechanism of action. Actinomycin is proposed to bind to a premelted DNA-conformation (known as beta- DNA) present within the transcription complex. This acts to immobilize the complex, interfering with the elongation of growing RNA chains. Nucleolar (ribosomal) 5S RNA synthesis is particularly sensitive to the presence of actinomycin, and this probably accounts for its pharmacological activity as well as its extreme toxicity to mammalian cells. This paper asks – might trace amounts of actinomycin given over an extended period of time prove to be a powerful anticancer chemotherapeutic regimen?

Keywords: Actinomycin toxicity and its anticancer activity, inhibition of the elongation of growing RNA chains in DNA transcription, actinomycin binds to a premelted beta-DNA conformation within the transcription complex preferentially inhibiting nucleolar (ribosom


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