Repurposing Antiparasitic & Antifungal Drugs for Cancer

Dr Simon Yu

By Simon Yu, MD

In September, I am presenting at the Cancer Control Society conference in California. My topic: Is it possible to treat cancer as a neglected infectious disease? Is cancer a metabolic disease, with tumors growing – and metastases spreading – like a metabolic parasite? It may sound farfetched, but there is growing evidence to support this novel idea that can change the way we treat many types of cancers.

Researching this topic in depth with Frederick T. Guilford, MD, we published a comprehensive article, “Antiparasitic and Antifungal Medications for Targeting Cancer Cells: Literature Review and Case Studies,” in Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine. It states, “The information offered in this review suggests scientists should think of cancer not only as a metabolic disease but also as a metabolic parasite and should consider using antiparasitic medications under a new understanding of the role of inflammation, infection, and mitochondrial dysfunction in the development of cancer cells.”

The observation that cancers, like parasites, feed off of our bodies without returning a benefit has been known for some time, and early in the 20th century, it was suggested that cancer is a parasite. The metabolism of some parasites shows a method of energy formation similar to that of cancer cells. An approach using currently available medications that target both fungal and parasite metabolism appears to interfere with tumor growth and aggressiveness.

Due to the complexity of the behavior and biology of the cells, scientists’ primary focus should be on detection and elimination of sources of inflammation. Physicians should think of cancer not only as a metabolic disease but also as a metabolic parasite, and should also consider using antiparasitic and antifungal medications with the understanding of the role of inflammation, infection and mitochondrial dysfunction in the development of cancer cells.

I have also learned that there is much research to be done on how our cells and our ancestral microbes share commonalities as well as differences in how they function in health and disease to this day – providing potential new avenues for treatment. One of my favorite phrases is, “We are not so different, you and I.” It applies not only across people and cultures, but across cells, microorganisms, and all of God’s creatures, great and small.

With use of antiparasitic, antifungal, and antibiotic medications, as patients recover healthy metabolic and immune functioning, it is not uncommon to witness the resolution of many chronic diseases, including asthma, autism, Lyme, persistent Lyme, psoriasis, neurologic disorders like MS and Parkinson’s, seizures, and cancers. I think it is worth asking the question if it is possible to treat cancer as a neglected infectious disease, as if cancer is a metabolic parasite. Time to think differently!

Dr. Simon Yu, MD is a Board Certified Internist. He practices Internal Medicine with an emphasis on Integrative Medicine to use the best each has to offer. For more articles and information about integrative medicine, patient success stories, and Dr. Yu’s latest book, AcciDental Blow Up in Medicine: Battle Plan for Your Life, visit his website at www.preventionandhealing.com or call Prevention and Healing, Inc., 314-432-7802. You can also attend a free monthly presentation and discussion on Integrative Medicine at his office on the second Tuesday each month at 6:30 pm. Call to verify the date. Seating is limited, arrive early.

Weaving Internal Medicine with Integrative Medicine to Use the Best Each Has to Offer