By Dr. Cameron Chai
Biopharmaceutical company, Genprex, reports positive results on a clinical trial conducted for Oncoprex nanoparticles to treat advanced lung cancer.
PLoS One has published the study titled, "Phase I Clinical Trial of Systemically Administered TUSC2 (FUS1)-Nanoparticles Mediating Functional Gene Transfer in Humans" in its latest April issue.
The trial demonstrated the safety of Oncoprex, which is a nanomolecular therapy that exploits the TUSC2 tumor suppressor. Most major cancers are linked to TUSC2 defects. The drug Oncoprex controls inflammation and signaling of cells. It also causes apoptosis. In the trial, Oncoprex effectively delivered the tumor suppressor FUS1 (TUSC2) to the cancer cells. The drug shrank the metastatic and primary tumors in certain patients. In five patients, the drug halted the tumor growth.
As part of the trial, 31patients with late-stage lung cancer underwent treatment with Oncoprex. These patients were not responding to prior therapy. Of these, 23patients became eligible for evaluation as they had received more than one dose of Oncoprex. The TUSC2 protein increased 10 to 25 times after the drug treatment.
The trial demonstrated that the drug Oncoprex can be administered intravenously in lung cancer patients. In this treatment process, a tumor suppressor gene was delivered using nanoparticle vectors to human cancer cells intravenously.
A combination trial of Oncoprex with erlotinib is set to commence in 2012. Patients who do not respond to erlotinib and those who do not have the EGFR mutation will be considered for the phase II clinical trial.