Your Gifts at Work: Trials Begin for Cancer Drug

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Clinical trials have begun for a promising drug that aims to improve treatment for solid tumors. Funding from Riley Children’s Foundation donors helped Mark R. Kelley, Ph.D., and his team at the Wells Center for Pediatric Research develop the drug, APX3330, which appears to attack cancers including neuroblastoma while protecting from toxic chemotherapy side effects. “It's the whole point of what we’re doing,” says Dr. Kelley. “It's really to make the lives of the children better.”

Apexian Pharmaceuticals, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, announced the opening of the trial on January 24. Data from a variety of pre-clinical studies indicates that APX3330 not only has an anti-cancer effect, but is also shown to prevent and reverse the nerve damage caused by certain forms of chemotherapy. 

This clinical study is the first to explore APX3330 use in patients with advanced cancer, and is the culmination of extensive donor-supported research conducted by Dr. Mark Kelley and other scientists worldwide. Gifts from Riley Children’s Foundation donors helped Dr. Kelley advance his team’s work on this drug and obtain significant research grants provided through the National Cancer Institute. Pediatric research is a key funding priority for Riley Children’s Foundation, the fundraising arm of Riley Hospital for Children. Riley Hospital gains about $12 in federal grant support for every dollar donated. Donations have helped Riley/Indiana University School of Medicine rise into the top 10 U.S. pediatric research programs at public schools of medicine (Source: Blue Ridge Institute for Medical Research).

Click here to learn more about the clinical trial (NCT03375086). 

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