ZETAGEN THERAPEUTICS AWARDED $2 MILLION USD GRANT FROM THE NATIONAL CANCER INSTITUTE (NCI) FOR PHASE 2 STUDY OF ZETAMET™ FOR TREATMENT OF METASTATIC BONE CANCERS
(Zetagen Therapeutics Press Release: December 13, 2021)
Zetagen Therapeutics, Inc., a private, clinical-stage, biopharmaceutical company dedicated to driving breakthrough innovation in the treatment of metastatic bone cancers and osteologic interventions, today announced it has received a two year, $2 million USD grant from the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The grant will be used for the Phase 2 clinical and commercial development of its ZetaMet™ technology. ZetaMet is a synthetic, small-molecule, inductive biologic technology being developed to target and resolve metastatic bone lesions while inhibiting future tumor growth and regenerating bone..
“This support from the NCI marks a key milestone and will facilitate the continued development of ZetaMet for the use in treating metastasis in bone,” said Bryan S. Margulies, PhD,chief scientific officer of Zetagen Therapeutics. “Preclinical trials have successfully demonstrated ZetaMet’s ability to resolve existing metastatic bone lesions, inhibit pain and stimulate targeted bone regeneration. If these results hold true in the next phase of study, ZetaMet could offer an entirely new treatment for patients living with certain late-stage cancers where present therapies do not offer desired results.”
ZetaMet works through a mechanism of action (MOA) which is a novel and patented molecular pathway. The small molecule, precisely-dosed, delivered to the affected area through a proprietary drug-eluting carrier, stimulates stem cells, activating cells to grow healthy bone known as “osteoblasts”, and inhibits cells associated with bone degradation called “osteoclasts”.
Bone metastases are common among cancer patients and occur when cells from the primary cancerous tumor relocate to the bone. When these cancers relocate, they can cause changes to the bone, damaging it in a process called osteolysis. Osteolysis can cause small holes within the bone, weakening it and increasing the risk of breakage. These holes are called “lytic lesions.” Among cancers which metastasize to bone, Breast and Prostate are most prevalent, amounting to approximately 70-percent of cases.
“We know there are hundreds of thousands of patients living with late-stage cancers which involve painful, debilitating metastatic bone lesions,” said Joe C. Loy, CEO of Zetagen Therapeutics. “This recognition from the NCI further reinforces our commitment to developing breakthrough therapies that will make a tangible difference in quality of life as they battle these devastating diseases.”
Earlier this year, ZetaMet received Breakthrough Device designation from the Centers for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH) of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The first human clinical trial using ZetaMet in Stage 4 breast cancer patients is being targeted for early 2022.