According to a story from globenewswire.com, the biopharmaceutical company Innovation Pharmaceuticals recently released a report in which recent studies and pre-clinical research has suggested that the company’s experimental drug Kevetrin could be a viable treatment for acute myeloid leukemia and other forms of cancer. The drug also has potential as part of a combination treatment with immunotherapies.
Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML)
Acute myeloid leukemia, also known as acute myelogenous leukemia, is a type of blood cancer which affects myeloblasts, stem cells that would normally develop into myeloid white blood cells. There are a number of risk factors for acute myeloid leukemia, including other blood disorders such as myelodysplastic syndrome, family history, certain genetic variants, chemical exposure (including chemotherapy agents), and radiation. Symptoms include an increased risk of infection, easy bruising and bleeding, fatigue, shortness of breath, fever, weight and appetite loss, anemia, and bone/joint pain. Treatment for this cancer is most often chemotherapy or stem cell transplant; there are very limited options for patients with relapsed disease. The five year survival rate for acute myeloid leukemia is only 27 percent in the US. There is a clear need for more effective treatments for this cancer. To learn more about acute myeloid leukemia, click here.
Kevetrin is a small molecule modulator of p53, a protein that plays a critical role in preventing cell mutations. In many forms of cancer, the protein itself is often mutated, meaning that one of the body’s critical anti-tumor defenses is disabled. The drug targets p53 and several other genes that are associated with acute myeloid leukemia. Research studies suggest that Kevetrin could be useful in treating acute myeloid leukemia that is “wild type” and even more so in cancers where TP53 mutations are present.
Kevetrin also has potential as part of treatment combination regimens with immunotherapies. These drugs work by triggering or augmenting the body’s immune system response to the presence of cancer. Combination approaches have grown more popular in recent years as single-agent therapies are often insufficient in treating aggressive cancers.
As a modulator of p53, Kevetrin has the potential to be impactful in a broad range of cancers; acute myeloid leukemia is only the beginning. The drug has already earned Orphan Drug designation from the US Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of a number of rare and aggressive cancer types, such as retinoblastoma, ovarian cancer, and pancreatic cancer.