At The Wistar Institute in Philadelphia researchers have discovered that an anti-diabetic drug stimulates an anti-aging gene which has the ability to restrain the progress of melanoma in older people. Melanoma is a common form of skin cancer that is seen more frequently in patients who are older. While target therapies being used currently to treat this form of skin cancer have had better survival rates than chemotherapy, they are also limited if the patient develops a resistance to them. In the researchers latest study, they discovered that by treating mice with Klotho promoting drug, the mice’s Wnt5A levels (which promote metastatic progression and resistance to therapy) were lowered and their therapy-resistant melanoma decreased…but this result only occurred in the older mice, not the young mice.

Ashani Weeraatna, Ph.D. stated that the new study indicated a “differential therapeutic approach can be beneficial for older patients in melanoma and suggests that age should be taken into account to design better treatments for certain cohorts of patients.”

“We believe that there is a threshold effect whereby the levels of Klotho, dictated mostly by the age of the patients, are crucial in determining whether they will benefit from this treatment or not,” Reeti Behera, Ph.D., added.

Learn more what Melanoma looks like, what causes it, and how it can be prevented.