CyRx Corp., a biopharmaceutical company specializing in oncology, today announced that it has commenced an open-label phase 1b safety and dose escalation clinical trial with INNO-206 at the Sarcoma Oncology Center in Santa Monica, Calif., with up to 24 patients with advanced solid tumors who have failed standard therapies.

INNO-206 is a tumor-targeting pro-drug of doxorubicin, the only FDA-approved, and commonly prescribed chemotherapeutic used as a standard treatment for a variety of cancers. INNO-206 is designed to improve efficacy and reduce adverse events through controlled release and preferential targeting of tumors.

“Determining the maximum dose of INNO-206 in patients with solid tumors is a major step forward in advancing this oncology drug candidate’s development,” CytRx president and CEO Steven A. Kriegsman stated in the press release. “We have already completed drug formulation and manufacturing optimization in anticipation of moving rapidly into phase 2 clinical programs following completion of this clinical trial.

The company noted that objective clinical responses have been seen with INNO-206 in patients with sarcoma, breast and lung cancers in an earlier phase 1 trial. Kriegsman said the phase 1b trial will provide the company with significant information, as it is the first of several indications for planned phase 2 clinical testing.

“This clinical trial will allow us to evaluate the safety of administering doses of INNO-206 that are over 2 to 4 times the standard dose of doxorubicin, which we believe we can accomplish without an increase in observed side effects over those historically seen with doxorubicin. We are encouraged by the fact that INNO-206 has demonstrated significantly greater efficacy than doxorubicin in animal models of breast cancer, small cell lung cancer, renal cancer, pancreatic cancer and ovarian cancer,” Daniel Levitt, MD, Ph.D., chief medical officer for CyRx stated.

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