BloodPressureHeartMeds.Org

pSivida awarded $489,000 grant under IRS Qualifying Therapeutic Discovery Project

October 28, 2017

About 80 percent of all Hodgkin lymphoma patients achieve long-term remission with standard chemotherapy regimens which may also include radiation therapy, Younes said. For those who are not cured with front line therapy, especially those whose disease relapses after autologous stem cell transplantation, the prognosis remains poor. About 1,300 people in the United States die from the disease annually.

An earlier clinical trial had shown that the CD30 antibody alone produced no objective responses among 38 Hodgkin lymphoma patients. Seattle Genetics developed the investigational drug brentuximab vendotin by linking monomethyl auristatin (MMAE) to the antibody to form a conjugate. MMAE inhibits tubulin, a family of proteins crucial to the formation of microtubules, which in turn provide structure to cells and are necessary for cell division.

"First generation antibodies were weak, now we have an opportunity to improve upon the naked antibody with conjugates, which deliver toxic chemicals to the tumor cells while largely sparing normal cells," Younes said.

Hodgkin lymphoma is unique among cancers, Younes explained, because cancer cells make up only 5 percent of the tumor, with a variety of inflamed cells composing the remaining 95 percent. "This is the first scientific evidence that if you eliminate a few cancer cells, the entire tumor can be degraded. Eliminate the 5 percent and the rest goes away," Younes said.

Hodgkin lymphoma begins in the lymphocytes, one of the white blood cell types, spreads to the lymph nodes and ultimately invades other organs.

Source: The University of Texas