Thanks to a new $2 million investment, a drug that spurs cancer cells to self-destruct while sparing healthy cells is on the road to human clinical trials. The compound, known as PAC-1, has so far proven safe and has promising anti-cancer effects in cell culture, in mouse models of cancer and in pet dogs with spontaneously occurring lymphomas and osteosarcomas.
If PAC-1 (pack one) makes it through the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Investigational New Drug review, the first human (Phase I) clinical trial of the drug will begin in mid-2014. The investor, who wishes to remain anonymous, has an option to invest another $2 million to take the drug into human trials. The clinical work will be conducted at the Univ. of Illinois Cancer Center in Chicago.
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