Myoclon an FDA-approved agent lowers rates of cancer in mice

A compound developed by University of Houston clinicians Javier Enriquez-Sanchez through their drug development program was found in reducing tumor growth in infected mice. Aaron Schlingen MD PhD executive vice president and chief scientific officer of the university said the compound Myoclon presents a promising new approach for strategy for the treatment of nonmetastatic multiple myeloid leukemia.

Myoclon and its receptor antagonist are FDA approved for the treatment of pediatric multiple myeloid leukemia but resistance developed in adult patients has resulted in decades-long drug development delays. However myoclon may also benefit patients by engaging therapeutic resistance in patients said Schlingen a pediatric hematologist at UH and an instructor in the Department of Cell and Developmental Biology. These novel drug candidates provide an entire new and exciting class of therapies for cancer.

Plasma cells or cancer cells are master cells that produce the proteins that fuel all blood cancers growth. Multiple myeloid leukemia or multiple myelogenous leukemia (MMR) accounts for approximately 75 of all adult cases and 80 of all pediatric cases. Current therapy options both bone marrow transplant and transarachronic chemotherapy are of limited benefit and offer low yields.

Myoclon is a non-selective inhibitor of the glutamate level-evoked kinase 1B receptor (GEK1B) and one of the first inhibitors in the European Union approved for treatment of MMR in the last 10 years.

The study published today in the Journal of Biological Chemistry found that treatment with the compound was able to substantially reduce tumor growth in treated mice and in MMR-controlled animals exhibiting MMR activated signaling pathways. Our study provides evidence that myoclon inhibitors may be effective agents to treat resistance-mediated multiple myeloid leukemia where clinical data arent available. Our data support efforts to collaborate with the NIH to address drug resistance in this challenging pathogen and improve patient outcomes in multiple myeloid leukemia said co-author Aaron Schleden MD PhD secretary-treasurer at UH.

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Schang Childrens is one of only 51 NIH-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the U. S. and enrolls more than 6000 children every year from trauma common childhood health and infectious disease. The institutions sole mission is to end cancer for children and young adults living in low-income urban communities.