Teniposide is used for the same indications as etoposide; however, it is 5-10 times more potent than etoposide. Synonyms of this drug are epipodophyllotoxin, vumon, and others.

Hormonal drugs are successfully used for complex treatment of malignant tumors. Tumors can be both hormone-dependent, as well as hormone-sensitive.

Hormone-dependent tumors regress in the absence of hormonal activity. Consequently, it is possible to both hinder and even prevent the development of hormone-dependent tumors using drugs. In particular, the antiestrogen drug tamoxifen prevents stimulation of cancerous breast tumor cells by estrogens. This also applies to aminoglutethimide, an inhibitor of corticosteroid synthesis by the adrenal glands.

Hormone-sensitive tumors may regress, and frequently stop growth upon introduction of certain hormones. The main hormone-sensitive forms of cancer are breast and prostate carcinoma, lymphoma, and a few other forms of carcinomas.

Hormonal drugs that inhibit growth of certain human tumors are steroids, including andro-gens, estrogens, progestins, and corticosteroids, although only glucocorticoids are used. Moreover, neither cortisol nor cortisone are used to treat malignant tumors, but instead pred-nisone, prednisolone, methylprednisolone, and dexametasone are used.

Hormonal drugs do not cure cancer, although they do exhibit pronounced palliative action, with the exception of the cytotoxic action of glucocorticoids on lymphoid cells. In particular, this concerns predinsone, which is used to treat lymphomas and certain leukemias in combination therapy.

The exact mechanism of action of steroids is not fully known.

30.5.1 Androgens

Androgens are derivatives of testosterone (29.1.5), methyltestosterone (29.1.7), flu-oxymesterone (29.3.5), and testolactone (30.5.1), and are frequently used for palliative treatment of breast cancer in post-menopausal women, for which hormone therapy is used. The exact mechanism of the anticancer effect of androgens is not known. However, it is presumed that androgens block cell growth by inhibiting transport of natural hormone into the cell. Moreover, androgens can inhibit estrogen synthesis, thus depleting estrogen reserves.

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