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PPAR Research
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 8252796, 8 pages
Review Article

PPAR Agonists for the Prevention and Treatment of Lung Cancer

1Department of Medicine, Division of Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA
2Veterans Affairs Pittsburgh Healthcare System, Pittsburgh, PA 15240, USA

Correspondence should be addressed to Raju C. Reddy; ude.cmpu@crydder

Received 15 August 2016; Accepted 8 December 2016; Published 20 February 2017

Academic Editor: Valeria Amodeo

Copyright © 2017 Sowmya P. Lakshmi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Lung cancer is the most common and most fatal of all malignancies worldwide. Furthermore, with more than half of all lung cancer patients presenting with distant metastases at the time of initial diagnosis, the overall prognosis for the disease is poor. There is thus a desperate need for new prevention and treatment strategies. Recently, a family of nuclear hormone receptors, the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs), has attracted significant attention for its role in various malignancies including lung cancer. Three PPARs, PPARα, PPARβ/δ, and PPARγ, display distinct biological activities and varied influences on lung cancer biology. PPARα activation generally inhibits tumorigenesis through its antiangiogenic and anti-inflammatory effects. Activated PPARγ is also antitumorigenic and antimetastatic, regulating several functions of cancer cells and controlling the tumor microenvironment. Unlike PPARα and PPARγ, whether PPARβ/δ activation is anti- or protumorigenic or even inconsequential currently remains an open question that requires additional investigation. This review of current literature emphasizes the multifaceted effects of PPAR agonists in lung cancer and discusses how they may be applied as novel therapeutic strategies for the disease.