New anti-cancer drug trials at UHG among first in worldOctober 8, 2010 - 7:30am
BY FRANK FARRAGHER
A new anti-cancer drug – to be used primarily in the fight against leukaemia and other blood cancers – is now about to be tested in clinical trials out of University Hospital Galway.
Blood cancer patients from the Galway area will be among the first in the world to use the drug – named NMS-116354 – which inhibits a cancer causing protein enzyme.
The Galway City Tribune has learned that over the coming week, the first patient from Galway will begin a course of the drug in the trials being carried out under the auspices of UHG and NUI Galway.
The clinical trial already represents a remarkable breakthrough for the recently established Clinical Research Facility, headed up since last month, by NUI Galway graduate, Professor Frank Giles, former haematologist at the prestigious University of Texas Health.
Consultant haematologist and professor of haematology at NUI Galway, Professor Michael O’Dwyer – who is heading up the current trial of the anti-cancer drug – said this week that the project was a real success story for Galway and Ireland.
“We are very excited about the potential for this new anti-cancer agent as a new advance in the treatment of leukaemia. It’s already in phase one clinical trial in solid tumours in France and the USA, but this particular trial (Galway) is the first worldwide in blood cancers such as leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma,” said Prof O’Dwyer.
The Galway connection to the new potentially life-saving drug has been further strengthened by the arrival in NUI Galway three years ago of Corrado Santo Camale, now professor of molecular medicine at the National Centre for Bioengineering Science at the college.
Read more in this week's Galway City Tribune