Dicerna Pharmaceuticals, Inc. has announced the initiation of a Phase 1 dose-escalating clinical study of DCR-MYC, (also known as DCR-M1711), in patients with solid tumors, multiple myeloma, or lymphoma.
DCR-MYC, Dicerna's first drug candidate to enter clinical testing, is a Dicer Substrate siRNA (DsiRNA) that targets the driver oncogene MYC, which is central to the growth of many hematologic and solid tumor malignancies. Dicerna is investigating DCR-MYC in a variety of tumor types with the initial focus on hepatocellular carcinoma.
"The MYC oncogene has been a therapeutic target of great interest for many years because of its expression in a variety of tumor types and the demonstration that increased MYC expression is related to the progression of these cancers," commented Anthony W. Tolcher, M.D., Director of Clinical Research at Southern Texas Accelerated Research Therapeutics, a principal investigator in the study. "The DsiRNA approach holds the possibility to overcome the challenges faced by previous drug development efforts to modulate this important target by directly interfering with the expression of MYC."
"In preclinical studies, DCR-MYC demonstrated impressive knockdown of the MYC oncogene," stated Pankaj Bhargava, M.D., Chief Medical Officer of Dicerna. "The Phase 1 trial of DCR-MYC now provides us the opportunity to test these promising data in clinical trials, furthering our efforts to realize the significant therapeutic potential of Dicer Substrate RNA interference."