Silenseed Phase II pancreatic cancer drug trial to begin

Dr. Amotz Shemi Photo: Oria Tadmor

The Israeli company is raising $10 million in order to help conduct the trial.

Israeli drug development company Silenseed is to begin a Phase II multicenter trial for its pancreatic cancer treatment. The study, which has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), will be held at several leading medical centers in the US with the participation of 80 patients. At the same time, the Modi'in based company is raising $10 million in order to help conduct the trial. To date, Silenseed has raised $10 million, mainly from private investors, including leading Israeli cancer researchers.

Silenseed's drug is based on siRNA, a promising technology which has yet to be translated into an effective treatment. siRNA has been marked out as a potential new family of drugs compared with most treatments today which are based on proteins or protein agents. siRNA prevents the decoding of certain proteins from a gene called KRAS, which creates a mutation that becomes a cancerous cell.

the slow progress made by siRNA technology stems among other things through the difficulty of delivering the RNA to the right place in the body and into the cell because it breaks up so easily.

Silenseed CEO Amotz Shemi said, 'We have developed a unique delivery system as part of which we store the drug within a polymer implant that knows how to protect against breaking down and to release it gradually. We place this implant in an endoscope in the center of the growth."

This method successfully came through a Phase I safety and efficacy trial with 15 patients.

Silenseed had previously considered raising money through a Nasdaq IPO but gave up on the idea. Shemi said, "The stock exchange was flourishing for a very short time and then cooled down again. We believe we can move forward more conventionally before attempting a far larger IPO."

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on July 30, 2017

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2017

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Dr. Amotz Shemi Photo: Oria Tadmor
Dr. Amotz Shemi Photo: Oria Tadmor
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