Identification of prophylactic drugs for oxaliplatin-induced peripheral neuropathy using big data

Biomed Pharmacother. 2022 Apr:148:112744. doi: 10.1016/j.biopha.2022.112744. Epub 2022 Feb 28.


Background: Drug repositioning is a cost-effective method to identify novel disease indications for approved drugs; it requires a shorter developmental period than conventional drug discovery methods. We aimed to identify prophylactic drugs for oxaliplatin-induced peripheral neuropathy by drug repositioning using data from large-scale medical information and life science information databases.

Methods: Herein, we analyzed the reported data between 2007 and 2017 retrieved from the FDA's database of spontaneous adverse event reports (FAERS) and the LINCS database provided by the National Institute of Health. The efficacy of the drug candidates for oxaliplatin-induced peripheral neuropathy obtained from the database analysis was examined using a rat model of peripheral neuropathy. Additionally, we compared the incidence of peripheral neuropathy in patients who received oxaliplatin at the Tokushima University Hospital, Japan. The effects of statins on the animal model were examined in six-week-old male Sprague-Dawley rats and seven or eight-week-old male BALB/C mice. Retrospective medical chart review included clinical data from Tokushima University Hospital from April 2009 to March 2018.

Results: Simvastatin, indicated for dyslipidemia, significantly reduced the severity of peripheral neuropathy and oxaliplatin-induced hyperalgesia. In the nerve tissue of model rats, the mRNA expression of Gstm1 increased with statin administration. A retrospective medical chart review using clinical data revealed that the incidence of peripheral neuropathy decreased with statin use.

Conclusion and relevance: Thus, drug repositioning using data from large-scale basic and clinical databases enables the discovery of new indications for approved drugs with a high probability of success.

Keywords: Database; Drug repositioning; Oxaliplatin-induced peripheral neuropathy; Simvastatin.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anticholesteremic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Antineoplastic Agents / adverse effects
  • Big Data
  • Databases, Factual
  • Drug Repositioning / methods*
  • Humans
  • Hyperalgesia / chemically induced
  • Hyperalgesia / drug therapy
  • Japan
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Oxaliplatin / adverse effects*
  • Peripheral Nervous System Diseases / chemically induced
  • Peripheral Nervous System Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis / methods*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Simvastatin / therapeutic use


  • Anticholesteremic Agents
  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Oxaliplatin
  • Simvastatin