The roles of beta-adrenergic receptors in tumorigenesis and the possible use of beta-adrenergic blockers for cancer treatment: possible genetic and cell-signaling mechanisms.Cancer Manag Res. 2012; 4:431-45.CM
Cancer is the leading cause of death in the USA, and the incidence of cancer increases dramatically with age. Beta-adrenergic blockers appear to have a beneficial clinical effect in cancer patients. In this paper, we review the evidence of an association between β-adrenergic blockade and cancer. Genetic studies have provided the opportunity to determine which proteins link β-adrenergic blockade to cancer pathology. In particular, this link involves the major histocompatibility complex class II molecules, the renin-angiotensin system, transcription factor nuclear factor-kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells, poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase-1, vascular endothelial growth factor, and the reduced form of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate oxidase. Beta-adrenergic blockers also exert anticancer effects through non-genomic factors, including matrix metalloproteinase, mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways, prostaglandins, cyclooxygenase-2, oxidative stress, and nitric oxide synthase. In conclusion, β-adrenergic blockade may play a beneficial role in cancer treatment. Additional investigations that examine β-adrenergic blockers as cancer therapeutics are required to further elucidate this role.