While many research teams focus on discovering new treatments for diseases, finding ways to make existing FDA approved drugs—the end result of years of research, development, and resources—work better for patients is ongoing priority. Improving duration of remissions using existing therapies benefits patients who do not have years to wait for new drugs to come to market.
This past year, PCF Researcher Nima Sharifi, MD (Cleveland Clinic) discovered new—and previously unanticipated—aspects of how next-generation androgen inhibitor abiraterone (Zytiga) is processed in to other “good” and “bad” compounds in the body when patients are treated with the drug. Importantly, his team devised a way to alter abiraterone metabolism to allow the body to make less of the “bad” and more of the “good” breakdown products of the drug. These ideas were then taken right into a ground breaking clinical trial in record time.
These findings hold enormous potential for over 200,000 men in North America and Europe and Australia receiving drugs like abiraterone by measuring and altering abiraterone metabolism.
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