ContextOsteosarcoma is the most common primary solid malignancy of the bone, mainly affecting pediatric patients. The main clinical issues are chemoresistance and metastatic spread, leading to a survival rate stagnating around 60% for four decades.
PurposeHere, we investigated the effect of simvastatin as adjuvant therapy on chemotherapy.
MethodsCell viability was assessed by the MTT test, and a combination index was evaluated by an isobologram approach. Cell motility was assessed by wound-healing assay. Cell-derived xenograft models were established in mice. FFPE tumor samples were assessed by immunohistochemistry.
ResultsIn vitro experiments indicate that simvastatin synergized the conventional chemotherapy drugs' inhibitory effect on cell viability. Functional assays reveal that simvastatin supplementation favored the anticancer mechanism of action of the tested chemotherapy drugs, such as DNA damage through intercalation or direct alkylation and disorganization of microtubules. Additionally, we show that even though simvastatin alone did not modify tumor behavior, it potentiated the inhibitory effect of doxorubicin on primary tumor growth (+50%, p < 0.05) and metastatic spread (+50%, p < 0.05). Our results provide evidence that simvastatin exerted an anti-tumor effect combined with chemotherapy in the preclinical murine model and represents valuable alternative adjuvant therapy that needs further investigation in clinical trials.