Even though gene therapy is closing in on cancer, it remains as yet an unpredictable industry. However, biotech companies are in a feverish hunt for breakthroughs, and gene therapy could hold the keys. Tremendous advances have been made in gene-based therapeutics, and companies, such as Genprex Inc. (NASDAQ: GNPX), with the potential to make breakthroughs could deliver blockbuster returns.
Most currently approved cancer regimens target only single molecules, or a single specific genetic abnormality. Oncoprex’s multimodal mechanism of action interrupts cell signaling pathways that cause replication and proliferation of cancer cells, re-establishes the pathways for cell death in cancer cells and modulates the immune response against cancer cells. Genprex clinical data indicate that Oncoprex, in combination with targeted therapies and immunotherapies, is significantly more effective than single drugs alone. Oncoprex has also demonstrated fewer side effects and less toxicity than many other lung cancer drugs.
Currently approved targeted therapies for advanced non-small cell lung cancer are only effective in a minority of patients, and eventually most patients become resistant to the treatments. Roughly 80% of lung cancers are non-small cell lung cancer, and the dismal 1% five-year survival rates haven’t improved in over a quarter century.
Genprex is well into Phase II clinical trials with Oncoprex for the treatment of the deadliest type of tumor, non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Preliminary results from the ongoing trial to date are encouraging. Using Oncoprex in combination with Roche’s erlotinib showed disease control rates of 78%, which substantially exceed the 58% disease control rates demonstrated in other drug combination trials.
In addition, more than 40% of patients had tumor regression, and one patient — out of nine evaluated to date in Genprex’s Phase II drug combination trial — experienced what’s called a complete response. The patient, suffering with metastatic NSCLC, had complete disappearance of both the lung primary tumor as well as the metastasized cancer in the lung, liver and lymph nodes.
Genprex’s cutting-edge platform for the targeted delivery of gene therapeutics also has wide-ranging potential applications for the treatment of various other types of cancer, such as head and neck, renal cell (kidney), glioblastoma and soft-tissue cancer, among others.
Genprex holds more than 30 patents and 2 patents pending for its platform technologies and targeted molecular therapies. The company’s promising pipeline includes Oncoprex in combination with another cancer drug, Tarceva, in a Phase II clinical trial; and Oncoprex Immunogene therapy in preclinical development.
The company is conducting ongoing research to find biomarkers to identify patients most likely to benefit from Genprex treatments, as well as other drugs that will be synergistic with Genprex gene therapies. Given the enormous potential and vast unmet medical need, Genprex plans to apply for Fast Track, Breakthrough or RMAT designation from the FDA.
Preliminary results show that Oncoprex has the potential to become an effective add-on therapy for the treatment of deadly non-small cell lung cancer. Genprex plans to expand the current erlotinib-Oncoprex trial to multiple research centers and conduct more new trials.
If Phase II results are as positive as preliminary indications, it could spark a rally in the shares and possibly even lure a large biotechnology or pharma company to sign a high-value partnership with Genprex.
Should such a strategic partnership to commercialize Genprex’s technology transpire, it could potentially generate enormous value for the company’s shareholders.
Start your research on GNPX right away and as always, trade safe.
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