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MDI Biological Laboratory scientist analyses potential drug therapy to counter peripheral nerve destruction

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 23 Feb 2016, The Mount Desert Island (MDI) Biological Laboratory has declared that assistant professor Sandra Rieger, Ph.D., has detected 2 drugs that could possibly be used to reverse peripheral nerve deterioration, arising from chemotherapy treatment for breast, pancreas, lung, ovarian, and other cancers. The drugs also have potential functions for the treatment of peripheral nerve damage induced by traumatic injuries, diabetes and other conditions.

Earlier this month, these drugs are the subject of a temporary patent registered by the MDI Biological Laboratory. Rieger, who is pursuing to investigate the drugs, will work through the MDI Biological Laboratory's for profit outgrowth company, Novo Biosciences, to shift the drugs into patient trials. If the drugs prove to be potent at handling nerve damage, they will be approved to a pharmaceutical company for further studies, with the objective of attaining FDA approval.

Kevin Strange, Ph.D., the president of the laboratory mentioned that presently, there are no efficient treatments for the critical causes of peripheral neuropathy, which affects 30 to 40% of chemotherapy patients.

Rieger has resolved that, in the existence of paclitaxel, an extensively used chemotherapeutic agent, peripheral neuropathy is caused by the elevated expression of MMP-13 (matrix-metalloproteinase 13). MMP-13 is lethal to the nerves and boosts the susceptibility of the skin on the hands and feet to injury from frequent stresses by lowering collagen, which Rieger depicted as the "glue" between the cells which helps the skin repel mechanical stress. 

The research has detected 2 drugs that prohibit paclitaxel-induced neurotoxicity by lowering the activity of MMP-13, contributing a new channel for budding therapeutic interventions. When given with paclitaxel, these modern drugs interrupted the degeneration of axons and renewed the touch feedback in zebrafish. 

Additionally, to chemotherapy, damage can be caused by multiple sclerosis, diabetes, chronic kidney disease, obesity, aging and many other conditions, forming a huge unmet demand for effective treatment.

According to Pharmaion, Global Biological Drugs Market Opportunities, 2011 - 2021 analyses that the present rational is that no single drug is expected to be efficient for the treatment of all peripheral damages, which can stem from various causes. On the other hand the hope, is that these drugs can also be used to treat other damages or that the zebrafish model can be used to analyze unique applicants for the medication of other damages.


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