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Cancer Cell Int. 2019 Nov 29;19:319. doi: 10.1186/s12935-019-1044-2. eCollection 2019.

Melatonin: an anti-tumor agent for osteosarcoma.

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1Department of Microbiology, Kashan University of Medical Sciences, Kashan, Islamic Republic of Iran.
2Research Center for Biochemistry and Nutrition in Metabolic Diseases, Institute for Basic Sciences, Kashan University of Medical Sciences, Kashan, Islamic Republic of Iran.


Osteosarcoma is the most common bone tumors which consisted of malignant mesenchymal cells generating osteoid and immature bone. It has been showed that osteosarcoma is common in children and adolescents and shows high mortality rate. A variety of therapeutic approaches (i.e., resection surgery, combined with chemotherapy and radiotherapy) have been used as conventional treatments in patients with osteosarcoma. Despite several attempts to improve therapeutic response, the rate of survival for osteosarcoma has not changed during the past 3 decades. Therefore, the discovery and developing new effective therapeutic platforms are required. Along to the established anti-cancer agents, some physiological regulators such melatonin, have been emerged as new anti-cancer agents. Melatonin is an indolamine hormone which is secreted from the pineal glands during the night and acts as physiological regulator. Given that melatonin shows a wide spectrum anti-tumor impacts. Besides different biologic activities of melatonin (e.g., immunomodulation and antioxidant properties), melatonin has a crucial role in the formation of bones, and its deficiency could be directly related to bone cancers. Several in vitro and in vivo experiments evaluated the effects of melatonin on osteosarcoma and other types of bone cancer. Taken together, the results of these studies indicated that melatonin could be introduced as new therapeutic candidate or as adjuvant in combination with other anti-tumor agents in the treatment of osteosarcoma. Herein, we summarized the anti-tumor effects of melatonin for osteosarcoma cancer as well as its mechanism of action.


Melatonin; Osteosarcoma; Therapy

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