SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 21, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Jennerex, Inc., a private clinical-stage biotherapeutics company focused on the development and commercialization of first-in-class targeted oncolytic virus products for cancer, today announced that the first patient has been treated in a Phase 2a clinical trial of JX-594 as a neoadjuvant therapy in patients who are undergoing surgery to treat colorectal cancer that has spread to the liver.
The study is being led by Rebecca Auer, M.D., surgical oncologist at The Ottawa Hospital, associate scientist at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute and assistant professor of surgery at the University of Ottawa in Ottawa, Canada. The clinical trial is being supported by funding from the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research.
"This trial will allow us to evaluate the use of JX-594 in patients with surgically resectable disease, potentially expanding the role of this therapy in the treatment continuum," said David H. Kirn, M.D., president and chief medical officer of Jennerex. "We continue to believe that JX-594 could play an integral role in the treatment of cancers and look forward to the results of this trial along with data from the larger Phase 2b study, called TRAVERSE, that is under way in patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma."
"In addition, this study will allow us to expand our analysis of the multi-mechanistic therapeutic activity of JX-594 through the examination of tumor specimens collected during surgery following JX-594 administration," said John C. Bell, Ph.D., senior scientist, cancer therapeutics, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, and professor of medicine, University of Ottawa. Dr. Bell is also the program leader of the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research's Immuno- and Bio-therapies Program.
This Phase 2a clinical trial will enroll approximately 20 patients with colorectal cancer metastases to the liver. Patients will receive a single