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  • Interim results from a Race Oncology (RAC) preclinical research program show its Zantrene drug has the potential to enhance immunotherapy outcomes in melanoma
  • Race says the research program has found that used at low concentrations, Zantrene enhances cancer immunotherapy in mice in three distinct and complementary ways
  • This includes the direct killing of melanoma cells, the activation of immune cells and the reduction of the expression of immune evasion genes in the tumour
  • Race says these results will support further clinical research using Zantrene with immune therapy treatments to improve melanoma patient outcomes
  • Race shares are up 9.01 per cent to $1.82 at 11:03 am AEST

Preclinical research has shown Race Oncology’s (RAC) anti-cancer drug, Zantrene, has the potential to enhance immunotherapy outcomes in melanoma.

In 2021, the company entered a research program with the University of Newcastle to explore the use of Zantrene to treat melanoma.

Race today said interim results from the program found that used at low concentrations, Zantrene enhanced cancer immunotherapy in mice in three distinct and complementary ways — the direct killing of melanoma cells, activation of immune cells and reduction of the expression of immune evasion genes in the tumour.

The drug, in combination with immunotherapy, led to shrinkage of melanoma tumours in mice that did not respond to immunotherapy alone.

Further, Zantrene activated immune cells positively to better target tumours, and the drug reduced resistance to immune therapy in human melanoma tumour cells.

“While checkpoint inhibitors have revolutionised the treatment of advanced melanomas, far too many patients show no, or only a short-term response, to these treatments,” Race Chief Scientific Officer Dr Daniel Tillet said.

“Zantrene has shown its ability to work in three complementary ways to enhance the anti-melanoma immune response. I continue to be amazed by the novel utility we’re seeing for Zantrene as a potential new cancer treatment.”

Race said these results would support further clinical research using Zantrene with immune therapy treatments to improve melanoma patient outcomes.

Race shares were up 9.01 per cent to $1.82 at 11:03 am AEST.

RAC by the numbers
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