Home Breast Cancer Canadian Investigators Form the ‘Dream Team’ to Stop Breast Cancer from Spreading...

Canadian Investigators Form the ‘Dream Team’ to Stop Breast Cancer from Spreading to Other Parts of the Body

149
0
Canadian Investigators From the ‘Dream Team’ to Stop Breast Cancer from Spreading to Other Parts of the Body

McGill University, Stand Up to Cancer (SU2C Canada), the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS), and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) announced the launch of the SU2C Canada Metastatic Breast Cancer “Dream Team” to pursue the development of a new drug combination that may help stop the spread of breast cancer to other organs of the body. They will start a trial testing eFT508.

What is the Dream Team Doing?

They are investigating new ways to treat metastatic breast cancer by making it impossible for breast cancer cells to manufacture the proteins they need to be aggressive and continue to spread to organs beyond the breast.

What is the Dream Team Funding?

Up to $6 million CAD with a Phase I at $2 million CAD for support of an initial clinical trial. If the study goes well, subsequent phases and funding will continue.

Who is Leading the Team?

Nahum Sonenberg, PhD, Professor and Gilman Cheney Chair in Biochemistry of the Department of Biochemistry at McGill University, Montreal. Sonenberg is one of the world’s leaders when it comes to the study of the mechanisms of translation—the processes by which the human cell translates genetic information into proteins.

Michael Pollak, MD, Alexander Goldfarb Research Chair in cancer research at McGill and Director of the Division of Cancer Prevention of the Department of Oncology. Pollak is a senior investigator at the Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research at Jewish General Hospital in Montreal.

What agent will be tested?

eFT508 (tomivosertib) is a potent and selective inhibitor with IC50s of 2.4nM and 1nM respectively. It potentially results in decreased tumor cell proliferation and tumor growth.

What is the First Clinical Trial Planned by the Dream Team?

The pan-Canadian clinical trial will involve about 40 patients receiving treatment at the BC Cancer Agency in Vancouver, the University of Alberta in Edmonton, and McGill University in Montreal. The clinical trial team includes:

  • Wilson H. Miller, MD, PhD, Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research, Montreal
  • Michael Pollak, MD, Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research, Montreal
  • John Mackey, MD, Cross Cancer Centre, Edmonton, Alberta
  • Karen Gelmon, MD, BC Cancer Agency, Vancouver
  • Elizabeth Eisenhauer, MD, Kingston (Ontario) General Hospital Research Institute Molecular Pathology Core
  • Poul Sorensen, MD, PhD, University of British Columbia
  • Lynne Postovit, PhD, Cross Cancer Centre, Edmonton, Alberta
  • Brad Nelson, PhD, BC Cancer Agency’s Deeley Research Centre
  • Nahum Sonenberg, Goodman Cancer Centre, McGill University, Montreal
  • Michael Pollak, MD, Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research, Montreal
  • Sam Aparicio, MD, PhD, BC Cancer Agency Young Investigators
  • Daniela Quail, PhD, McGill University
  • Sonia del Rincon, PhD, Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research
  • Claudia Kleinman, PhD, Department of Human Genetics, McGill University Patient Advocates
  • Lynn Gentile, founder and director, Lynn and Joe Gentile Hope Fund
  • Candace Cook, breast cancer patient

About this team’s research

The SU2C Canada Metastatic Breast Cancer Dream Team is investigating a new way to treat metastatic breast cancer by making it impossible for breast cancer cells to manufacture the proteins they need to be aggressive and continue to spread to organs beyond the breast.

Great progress has been made in the treatment of breast cancer, and disease that remains localized to the breast can be treated successfully in most cases. However, truly curative treatments are not yet available for metastatic disease that has spread to the lungs or the bones or other organs.

Metastatic breast cancer is driven, in part, by out-of-control production of proteins by the cancerous cells. This happens when the basic machinery of the cell that translates genetic instructions carried by messenger RNA (mRNA) into living protein becomes dysfunctional and aggressively produces matter that healthy cells don’t need.

The Dream Team is taking a new, small-molecule inhibitor of the kinases MNK 1 and 2, enzymes that are key regulators of the mRNA translation process. They are using it to block this out-of-control production of proteins. The inhibitor works against the proteins needed for aggressive, metastatic behavior and may also help the body’s immune system fight the cancer.

The agent being tested — eFT508 (tomivosertib) — is known to inhibit the translational process but has not yet been applied to metastatic breast cancer. It will be given, in combination with paclitaxel or nab-paclitaxel, to metastatic breast cancer patients for whom the standard of care has not been effective, in the hope that the combination will halt or slow down the metastatic process.

About Stand Up To Cancer Canada

Stand Up To Cancer Canada is a Canadian registered charity (Reg: # 80550 6730 RR0001), launched by the U.S.-based Entertainment Industry Foundation in 2014. Stand Up To Cancer Canada (SU2C Canada) raises funds to support collaborative cancer research teams, as well as education and awareness programs conducted in Canada.

Under the direction of our SU2C Canada Scientific Advisory Committee, co-led by Alan Bernstein, PhD, president of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR) and Nobel laureate Phillip A. Sharp, PhD, SU2C Canada operates rigorous competitive review processes to identify the best research proposals to recommend for funding, oversee grants administration, and ensures collaboration across research programs. SU2C Canada currently supports three “signature” Dream Teams engaging dozens of the best and brightest researchers in different disciplines from 15 institutions across the country.

In addition to a board of leading Canadian broadcaster representation, SU2C Canada is guided by the SU2C Council of Founders and Advisors (CFA) including Katie Couric, Sherry Lansing, Kathleen Lobb, Lisa Paulsen, Rusty Robertson, Sue Schwartz, Pamela Oas Williams, and Ellen Ziffren. The late Laura Ziskin and the late Noreen Fraser are also co-founders. Sung Poblete, PhD, RN serves as SU2C president and CEO. The CFA includes entertainment industry leaders who utilize these communities’ resources to engage the public in supporting this new, collaborative model of cancer research, to increase awareness about cancer prevention, and to highlight progress being made in the fight against the disease.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.