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An anti-malarial drug could soon be used as a new weapon in the treatment against cancer, research has indicated.
Curaxins involves synthetic small molecules designed to target certain functions in the body that are altered when a patient suffers from cancer.
Cleveland BioLabs (CBLI) said its curaxin molecules cause the activation of the tumour suppresser protein p53, which commonly becomes inactive in cancer, and suppresses NF-kB signalling – a mechanism seen in the majority of tumours that encourages the survival of cancerous cells.
A study looking at the founding molecule in the curaxin program – CBLC102 – using patients who had previously received hormonal treatment for advanced prostate cancer and chemotherapy recorded a partial response in one patient, while 50% of the study group exhibited a decrease or stabilisation in the speed of prostate cancer progression.
Dr Michael Kurman, clinical oncologist and chief medical officer of CBLI said: “We are satisfied with the outcome of this trial, which demonstrated indications of activity and a remarkable safety profile in one of the most difficult groups of cancer patients.”
Copyright Press Association 2009