New Studies Demonstrate Anti-Cancer Activity of Bioniche Technology Against Canine Cancer
results presented at 24th annual conference of the Veterinary Cancer Society
BELLEVILLE ON, November 8, 2004 – Bioniche Life Sciences Inc. (TSC: BNC), a research-based, technology-driven Canadian biopharmaceutical company, presented data from two different studies demonstrating the potential of its Mycobacterial cell wall-DNA Complex (MCC) for the treatment of canine advanced urinary bladder cancer and osteosarcoma at the 24th annual conference of the Veterinary Cancer Society (VCS), held in Kansas City, Missouri, USA, last week.
Dr. Deborah Knapp, a veterinary oncologist at the Purdue University Veterinary Teaching Hospital in West Lafayette, Indiana, USA, presented data on the ability of MCC to inhibit proliferation and induce apoptosis in a canine urinary bladder cancer cell line. Dr. Knapp also presented the first results describing the use of MCC to treat two dogs with naturally occurring, advanced invasive transitional cell carcinoma (TCC) of the urinary bladder on a compassionate use basis. Both dogs had experienced cancer progression in spite of standard therapy prior to receiving MCC. No toxicity was noted following the daily administration of MCC, and a partial regression of the bladder cancer occurred in both dogs.
“Along with in vitro study results, the partial regression of urinary bladder cancer in these two dogs and the lack of toxicity clearly justifies follow-up studies of this therapy in dogs with urinary bladder cancer,” said Dr. Knapp. “Although results in the first two dogs are very encouraging, a formal study is needed to confirm the benefit and safety of MCC in pet dogs. Because of the close similarity between naturally occurring TCC in pet dogs and invasive TCC in humans, studies in pet dogs could have implications for the evaluation of MCC in humans.”
“Dr. Knapp’s observations indicate that MCC may have a role in treating locally advanced bladder cancer, especially when used in an appropriate dosing regimen,” said Graeme McRae, President & CEO of Bioniche Life Sciences Inc.
Dr. Nigel C. Phillips, Chief Scientific Officer of Bioniche Life Sciences Inc. added: “The clinical responses observed in these cases appears to justify the development of a treatment protocol designed to fully utilize the direct, chemotherapeutic activity of MCC. The ability to demonstrate clinical activity in naturally occurring, advance bladder cancer, especially after failure of standard treatment, constitutes an important step in our developmental program for MCC.”
A second study presented by Dr. Mario C. Filion, Head of Biomedical Research at Bioniche Therapeutics, the human health division of Bioniche Life Sciences Inc., showed that MCC has anticancer activity against two canine osteosarcoma cell lines. “In this study, MCC was found to be active against canine osteosarcoma cell lines in vitro, and the addition of the bisphosphonates alendronate and pamidronate potentiated its anticancer activity,” stated Dr. Filion. “Bisphosphonates are used as inhibitors of bone resorption, an important process in the pathogenesis of osteosarcoma. These data extend the potential therapeutic application of MCC for the treatment of cancer.”
Mycobacterial cell wall-DNA Complex (MCC) is a non-viable cell wall composition prepared from the saprophytic microorganism Mycobacterium phlei. MCC acts as an immune stimulant and as a cell cycle arresting/proliferation-inhibiting and apoptosis (programmed cell death)-inducing agent for cancer cells. MCC contains mycobacterial DNA, which appears to be responsible for both of these activities.
Bioniche has completed Phase II studies using MCC for the treatment of superficial bladder cancer, and is currently working with medical advisors and regulators in the design of a pivotal, multi-centre Phase III clinical trial in North America and Europe to confirm the efficacy and safety of MCC in human patients with high-risk superficial bladder cancer (SBC).