Assoc. Prof. Dr. Fazlul Huq


Medicinal Chemist
University of Sydney, Australia

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Fazlul Huq was an Associate Professor in the Discipline of Pathology School of Medical Sciences Faculty of Medicine and Health University of Sydney. He led the cancer research group focused on drug discovery and therapy targeted to overcoming drug resistance and reducing side effects in ovarian and colorectal cancers. Besides designing new tumour compounds, the group is applying combinations of targeted therapy and tumour active phytochemicals found in herbs and spices, fruits and vegetables, and other plant as well as marine sources towards synergistic outcomes. The group has also successfully designed a number of active platinum and palladium complexes capable of targeting ovarian and colorectal tumours. Recently, they have also identified a number of proteins associated with drugs resistance in ovarian and colorectal cancers.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Huq has supervised 26 PhD and 5 Research Master candidates to successful completions. He is the author of over 240 peer reviewed publications. He is also an accomplished poet with over 26,000 compositions covering diverse themes including life, science, society and philosophy. His poetry is accessible at: http://allpoetry.com/Jujube.



Abstract

Can Combination with Phytochemicals Make Platinum Drugs More Desired and Welcome?

The present study aimed to investigate drug action from the combination of platinum drugs and designed complexes with tumour active phytochemicals including curcumin, EGCG, thymoquinone, resveratrol, ursolic acid and genistein in human ovarian tumour models. Activity of the compounds alone and in sequenced combinations in ovarian and colorectal cancer cell lines including A2780, A2780cisR and A2780ZD0473R were determined using MTT reduction assay. Drug accumulation and drug−DNA binding were determined using established protocols. Proteomic studies involving 2D gel electrophoresis and mass spectrometry were employed to characterize key proteins associated with platinum resistance. Generally but not always sequenced combinations with 2 to 4 h time gap were found to be synergistic. The variation in combined drug action with the change in sequence of administration indicates that the action of one drug is modulated by that of the other. Proteomic studies have identified over thirty proteins believed to be associated with platinum resistance in ovarian cancer. They belong to six major groups including cytoskeletal proteins, molecular chaperone and stress related proteins, proteins involved in detoxification and drug resistance, proteins involved in metabolic processes and mRNA processing proteins. The proteins are restored to normalcy due to treatment with synergistic combinations. If confirmed in vivo, the results suggest that appropriate combinations of targeted therapy and tumour active phytochemicals may provide an effective and affordable means of overcoming drug resistance in ovarian cancer.