Fenben is a popular dewormer used to treat parasites and worms (roundworms, hookworms, whipworms, some tapeworms) in dogs, cats, and horses. It is also being utilized as a cancer treatment method in humans, as part of the Joe Tippens Protocol.
A benzimidazole carbamate anthelmintic, fenbendazole has been safely used in human and animal medicine for over 50 years. This class of medications is known as broad-spectrum anthelmintics and includes drugs such as prazimidazole, albendazole, and mebendazole.
In our study, we examined the antitumor effects of fenbendazole on 5-fluorouracil-resistant colorectal cancer cells. After treating the cells with fenbendazole, we observed a time-dependent decrease in cell viability and a significant increase in autophagy and ferroptosis-augmented apoptosis. Furthermore, the activation of caspase-8 was suppressed in fenbendazole-treated cells. In addition, we found that fenbendazole induces necroptosis through a mechanism that involves RIP and RIP3 kinases as well as MLKL phosphorylation.
In a recent case report, we described a patient with advanced non-small cell lung cancer who self-administered fenbendazole and experienced tumor shrinkage in her lungs and colon. This is the first report of a human patient with cancer who has self-administered the anthelmintic and reported tumor regression. The patient acquired information about fenbendazole through social media, but the quality of the information she received was insufficient to improve her health status and she reported a negative attitude toward it. Our results suggest that social media can be used constructively to obtain reliable information about medical treatments for cancer patients.