Qualigen Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ:QLGN) has announced the expansion of its Sponsored Research Agreement with the University of Louisville to advance Qualigen’s Aptamer-linked Anti-Nucleolin (ALAN), AS1411-GNP anticancer drug candidate.
Qualigen expands research agreement with the University of Louisville
Work conducted under the initial Sponsored Research Agreement involves animal studies where the antitumor efficacy and safety of various ALAN compositions are being evaluated. The ALAN compositions have been designed for the treatment of pediatric and acute myeloid leukemia (AML). According to the terms of the amended agreement, the University of Louisville will carry pre-clinical trials on AML and other indications that include glioblastoma and non-small cell lung cancer. Glioblastoma is difficult to treat malign brain cancer because drugs cannot penetrate the blood-brain membrane, while NSCLC accounts for almost 85% of the 1.6 million lung cancer cases reported each year globally.
The company and the University will also, through the agreement, evaluate how ALAN can inhibit cancer cell metastasis as a possible adjuvant therapy. Unfortunately, after prior treatment, cancer recurrence is the leading cause of almost 90% of cancer mortality and thus represents a significant unmet clinical need.
Qualigen to expand ALAN for other indications
Michael Poirier, the CEO and President of Qualigen, said that the expanded agreement with the University of Louisville offers the company more data to help it achieve its goal of advancing ALAN into clinical studies against AML in 2021. Poirier added that they are specifically interested in other indications for the cancer drug candidate, especially pediatric cancers like leukemia and treatment of glioblastoma, which is a deadly brain cancer form.
The company is also interested in using ALAN as adjuvant Therapy for stopping cancer recurrence after initial treatment. Poirier also said that they are optimistic that the paths will be a larger part of their clinical efforts and expedite the expansion of the product pipeline in the coming years as they address a high unmet medical need for critically important cancer treatment areas.