ASX and Frankfurt Stock Exchange-listed PharmAust has unveiled encouraging initial results from the continuing phase IIb clinical trial of its anti-cancer drug, Monepantel on pet dogs suffering from B-cell lymphoma. The Perth-based company says the first five dogs who have undergone treatment with Monepantel across five participating test sites show “minimal side effects”.
ASX-listed PharmAust has unveiled some encouraging initial results from its continuing phase IIb clinical trials of its anti-cancer drug, Monepantel on pet dogs suffering from B-cell lymphoma. The Perth-based company says the first five dogs who have undergone treatment with Monepantel across five participating test sites show “minimal side effects”.
Lymphoma is a relatively common cancer diagnosed in dogs, with symptoms including enlarged lymph nodes, lethargy, weight loss and loss of appetite.
According to PharmAust, the side-effect levels seen in the trial to date have been below those of other conventional anti-cancer drugs and trial vets say the dogs have been in good spirits after four weeks of treatment.
Mild and occasional lack of appetite has been reported in some of the dogs, however, PharmAust says it appears insignificant and difficult to attribute solely to Monepantel.
The company says the owners of the five dogs that have completed the trial assessment have elected to continue treating their pets with Monepantel on “compassionate use” post-trial.
A further six pet dogs that did not meet the trial inclusion criteria are also being treated under compassionate use with Monepantel in varying combinations with other anti-cancer drugs.
PharmAust Chief Scientific Officer, Dr Richard Mollard said: “It is very satisfying to see minimal side effects after the observed inappetence during the first trial with the tablets. This gives PharmAust plenty of room to further Monepantel testing as a stand-alone therapy or in combination with other drugs in future larger trials.”
The principal investigator overseeing the phase IIb clinical trial, University of Melbourne Senior Lecturer (Oncology), Dr Claire Cannon said: “Monepantel is being well tolerated by the dogs in this study to date, with most dogs having no adverse events reported and those that were reported being mild.”
PharmAust says it intends carrying out an interim analysis of the trial outcomes so far to help evaluate Monepantel blood levels and target doses of the drug.
According to the company, its phase II trial of Monepantel on canines with B-cell lymphoma showed a regression of tumours and a stabilisation of the disease.
PharmAust says the phase IIb trial is still looking to recruit more dogs that have B-cell lymphoma.
Pet owners interested in enrolling their dogs in the trial are asked to contact a vet for a referral to their nearest trial centre, while vets who have queries about patient referrals or trial sites can contact Dr Mollard at firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
Vet clinics participating in the Monepantel program are the Animal Referral Hospital in Homebush, Sydney, the Animal Referral Hospital in Brisbane, Veterinary Specialist Services in Brisbane, Western Australian Veterinary Emergency and Specialties in Success, Perth and Perth Veterinary Specialists in Osborne Park, Perth.
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