Insulin Potentiation Therapy (IPT) Targeted Low Dose Chemotherapy

Targeted Low Dose Insulin Potentiation Therapy (TLD/IPT) is a procedure for targeting chemotherapeutic drugs directly to cancer cells, making the drugs tough on the disease. Targeted Low Dose Insulin Potentiation Therapy is regarded by its practitioners as more gentle on the patient than conventional oncology, while targeting the cancer cell. A lower dose of chemotherapy is used, thus less toxicity and generally fewer side effects for the patient.

Patients can usually maintain their normal lifestyle during treatment and may use complementary therapies  to strengthen the immune system and the body’s natural defense.

IPT Low dose chemotherapy with a biological response modifier

Targeted Low Dose/Insulin Potentiation Therapy (TLD/IPT) is a non-conventional protocol for the treatment of cancer based upon the hypothesis that insulin may be used to potentiate the effectiveness of commonly used anti-cancer drugs. Because cancer cells have many more insulin receptors than healthy cells, when exposed to insulin the cancer cells open these receptors and become more susceptible to low doses of chemotherapeutic agents. The chemotherapeutic agents are then given in much lower doses than in conventional therapies because of this insulin effect. TLD/IPT also delivers chemotherapeutic drugs more frequently, also thought to allow a therapeutic impact while imparting fewer side effects and allowing patients a higher quality of life.

Conventional chemotherapy tends to flood the body with drugs so enough will enter the cancer cells to kill them. Each of our trillions of cells has a membrane, an outer skin, that protects it from toxins. Standard chemotherapy must be given in large enough quantities to force penetration through that membrane.

How does TLD/IPT work?

TLD/IPT, however, penetrates easily through the cell membrane because it goes in hand-in-hand with sugar (glucose). Cancer cells, unlike healthy cells, need lots of glucose for fuel. Without it, they die. The membrane of a cancer cell is designed to take in a lot more glucose than healthy cells. In medical parlance we say cancer cells are equipped with many more insulin receptors. So, what if we pair a small dose of chemo drugs with the glucose? Yes, the cancer cell takes in the chemotherapy drugs in its effort to get at the sugar. Using insulin allows us to differentiate the cancer cells from the normal cells. This is a significant advantage.

As part of the approach to integrative cancer support and treatment, we may offer, where appropriate, targeted low dose chemotherapy with biological modulators, also known as TLD/IPT, Target Low Dose Insulin Potentiation Therapy, which is a type of fractionated chemotherapy. With the patient's involvement in weighing the risks and benefits, this promising therapy may be part of the treatment.*

What are the benefits of Targeted Low Dose Insulin Potentiation Therapy (IPT)?

• It can be very tough on tumors, while it is regarded by its practitioners to be more gentle for the patient. Patients generally may continue to live a normal lifestyle while being treated.
• Using insulin allows us to differentiate the cancer cell population from the normal cell population. That means a lower dose of chemotherapy can be used and this is important since these drugs have considerable toxicity associated with them.
• TLD/IPT reduces chemotherapy side effects in normal cells.
• Enhances chemotherapy’s killing effectiveness in cancer cells. A 1981 study found that using insulin increased the killing effect of the chemo drug methotrexate by a factor of 10,000, for example.[1]
• Gentle treatment and the use of complementary therapies to strengthen the immune system is our body’s best natural defense against the return of cancer. View additional   Complementary Therapies offered here: NIHA Integrative Cancer Treatment and Support
• IPT treatment costs significantly less than conventional chemotherapy.


TLD/IPT has been used for cancer worldwide since 1946; it has been used in the United States since 1997. The NIHA physician will explain the nature of the Insulin Potentiated Low Dose Chemotherapy, and work with the patient to determine if this is an appropriate therapy to pursue.


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*Please note that while NIHA staff have training and experience in cancer management and treatment, they are not oncologists; NIHA will actively coordinate its services with a patient’s oncologist and other treating physicians to ensure patients have an active team supporting their care.

This information is used with permission from the Best Answer for Cancer Foundation, an organization devoted to Integrative Care for Cancer.   .