Anti-cancer drug shows promise in human clinical trials

Diana Yates, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign:

A phase I clinical trial of PAC-1, a drug that spurs programmed cell death in cancer cells, found only minor side effects in patients with end-stage cancers. The drug stalled the growth of tumors in the five people in the trial with neuroendocrine cancers and reduced tumor size in two of those patients. It also showed some therapeutic activity against sarcomas, scientists and clinicians report in the British Journal of Cancer.


The findings from the clinical trial are noteworthy because the drug was tested in a small number of patients with advanced disease, said study clinical director Dr. Arkadiusz Dudek, an oncologist with the HealthPartners Cancer Center at Regions Hospital in St. Paul, Minnesota, and at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. Phase I clinical trials are designed to test whether a new drug compound has worrisome side effects or toxicities in human patients, Dudek said. But scientists also can look for early evidence of therapeutic benefits. The trial enrolled cancer patients with advanced disease who had run out of other treatment options.

This entry was tagged: , .   Bookmark the permalink.   Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.   Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.