J Cancer 2018; 9(9):1527-1537. doi:10.7150/jca.24488


Anticancer Properties of Fenofibrate: A Repurposing Use

Xin Lian1,2, Gang Wang1, Honglan Zhou1, Zongyu Zheng1,2, Yaowen Fu1,✉, Lu Cai1,2,3,✉

1. Department of Urology, the First Hospital of Jilin University; 71 Xinmin Street, Changchun 130021, China
2. Pediatric Research Institute, Department of Pediatrics, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY 40202, USA
3. Departments of Radiation Oncology, Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY 40202, USA


Cancer is a leading cause of death throughout the world, and cancer therapy remains a big medical challenge in terms of both its therapeutic efficacy and safety. Therefore, to find out a safe anticancer drug has been long goal for oncologist and medical scientists. Among clinically used medicines with no or little toxicity, fenofibrate is a drug of the fibrate class that plays an important role in lowering the levels of serum cholesterol and triglycerides while elevating the levels of high-density lipoproteins. Recently, several studies have implied that fenofibrate may exert anticancer effects via a variety of pathways involved in apoptosis, cell-cycle arrest, invasion, and migration. Given the great potential that fenofibrate may have anticancer effects, this review was to investigate all published works which directly or indirectly support the anticancer activity of fenofibrate. These studies provide evidence that fenofibrate exerted antitumor effects in several human cancer cell lines, such as breast, liver, glioma, prostate, pancreas, and lung cancer cell lines. Among these studies some have further confirmed the possibility and efficacy of fenofibrate anticancer in xenograft mouse models. In the last part of this review, we also discuss the potential mechanisms of action of fenofibrate based on the available information. Overall, we may repurpose fenofibrate as an anticancer drug in cancer treatment, which urgently need further and comprehensively investigated.

Keywords: fenofibrate, lipid-lowering, anticancer drug, repurposing

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How to cite this article:
Lian X, Wang G, Zhou H, Zheng Z, Fu Y, Cai L. Anticancer Properties of Fenofibrate: A Repurposing Use. J Cancer 2018; 9(9):1527-1537. doi:10.7150/jca.24488. Available from http://www.jcancer.org/v09p1527.htm