Institut Curie & Onxeo Partner for the Treatment of High-grade Glioma in Children
Longstanding partners Institut Curie and Onxeo announce a new collaboration, supported by the European program Fight Kids Cancer1. On the agenda: a phase 1b/2 study designed to evaluate the effect of Onxeo's drug candidate, AsiDNA™, in combination with radiotherapy in children with recurrent high-grade glioma eligible for re-irradiation.
Onxeo is a clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on the development of innovative drugs targeting mechanisms of response to tumor DNA damage (TDR) to fight rare or resistant cancers.
A disease with a poor prognosis
High-grade gliomas, which make up about 20% of tumors of the central nervous system (CNS) in children, still have a very poor prognosis with a 5-year survival rate of less than 20%. Their standard treatment consists of surgical excision, where feasible, followed by radiotherapy (RT). In the absence of feasibility of surgical excision, a surgical biopsy is performed for diagnosis. Radiotherapy is then performed alone or in combination with chemotherapy and/or other medical treatments.
It is therefore necessary to develop new treatments to overcome this type of tumor, as explained by Prof. François Doz, pediatric oncologist, assistant director of clinical research, innovation and teaching at SIREDO, Institut Curie, and principal investigator of the study:
High-grade gliomas in children represent a particularly severe pathology and the treatments available are limited in terms of their efficacy but also in terms of their potential toxicity on the brain.
The innovative association of AsiDNA™ with radiotherapy
Resulting from the work of the research laboratory of Marie Dutreix, CNRS Research Director at Institut Curie, AsiDNA™ represents a strong potential innovation for patients suffering from different types of cancer. How does it work? AsiDNA™ disrupts and depletes the capacity of tumor cells to repair their DNA by acting upstream of multiple repair pathways, as soon as damage is signaled.
Its status as a first-in-class inhibitor of the response to DNA damage is particularly promising in combination with radiotherapy for the treatment of recurrent high-grade glioma in children, as states Prof. François Doz:
Combined with radiotherapy, AsiDNA™ could represent a real therapeutic advance, combining greater efficacy with a very reassuring safety profile.
If this study proves positive, it could pave the way for further studies in combination with radiotherapy in children with brain tumours.
1. Fight Kids Cancer is a European call for projects, a joint initiative of the French association Imagine for Margo, the Belgian foundation KickCancer and the Luxembourg foundation Kriibskrank Kanner.