A new study published today in Nature presents the very promising test results of one drug, suggesting that it could shrink lung cancer tumors and other types of tumors caused by the KRAS gene mutation. .
The gene KRAS controls the activity of a protein that controls cell growth. Mutations that occur in this gene can cause normal cells to grow excessively, out of control leading to cancer.
Currently, cancer patients with the KRAS gene mutation often have poor prognosis due to lack of treatment. Now, the newly tested drug will be a new ray of hope, opening up opportunities for better personalized treatment for these patients.
The gene KRAS controls the activity of a protein that controls cell growth.
The new drug trial was conducted by scientists at Amgen Biopharmaceutical Company based in California, USA. Jude Canon, a researcher at Amgen, said the mutation on the KRAS gene was discovered more than 30 years ago.
However, treatments for this mutation and its proteins have not been truly successful in helping cancer patients improve their prognosis.
In their new study, Canon and colleagues made a breakthrough when they discovered a groove on the KRAS protein surface containing the G12C mutation .
G12C is a common mutation found in about 13% of cases of lung carcinoma, a type of non-small cell lung cancer. It also appears in 3% of patients with colorectal cancer and 2% of other types of solid tumors.
With the detection of the G12C mutation in the KRAS protein trench, Canon developed a drug that binds selectively to the mutant protein and stops it from working. The drug, designated AMG 510, has been tried and tested with positive results.
At high doses, Canon and its team destroyed the entire cancer cell in 80% of the infected mice, putting them in a remission state.
Going to human trials, they gave the drug to 4 patients with non-small cell lung carcinoma for 6 weeks. Results showed that a patient taking a 180 milligram dose shrunk 34% of the tumor size. More optimally, the tumor of the patient who took 360 milligrams has shrunk to 67 percent of the size.
Meanwhile, the other two patients who took a 180 milligram dose managed their tumor did not increase but did not shrink.
The tumor of the patient who used the 360 milligram dose has shrunk to 67% of its size.
Another unexpected side effect, Canon and his colleagues found that the AMG 510 seemed to act as an immunotherapy, helping to stimulate the immune system to fight cancer.
After the drug completely eliminated tumors in mice, the team tried to inject new cancer cells into their bodies. But the mice did not develop new tumors, suggesting that their immune systems have learned to eradicate the disease.
"This is a remarkable observation , " said researcher Simon Conn from Flinder University, Australia.
"AMG 510 can be combined with sequencing of cancer genes to be the best treatment for a range of G12C-related cancers from the KRAS gene, especially non-lung carcinoma. Right small cell, " Conn said.