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Stephenson Cancer Center Researchers Present Findings At International Scientific Conference

Physicians from the Oklahoma TSET Phase I Program at the Stephenson Cancer Center were selected to share their research findings at the 48th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO).

The ASCO conference, which is being held this week in Chicago, is the premier international scientific and educational conference in oncology, bringing together top cancer clinicians and researchers from across the nation and around the world.

The Stephenson Cancer Center physicians whose work is being highlighted are Shubham Pant, MD, Kathleen Moore, MD, Carla Kurkjian, MD, and Scott McMeekin, MD. These physicians specialize in first-in-human clinical trials, and especially in a new class of experimental cancer drugs that target tumor development at the molecular level.

Pant presented promising findings from a first-in-human study of an experimental oral medication, Notch inhibitor LY900009. Notch signaling plays a critical role in the development of multiple human cancers. The experimental treatment targets the process that leads to increased notch signaling, thus inhibiting tumor growth.

Moore presented promising findings of a first-in-human study of an experimental oral medication, x-82. This new therapy, an oral VEGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitor that disrupts cell signals which may lead to tumor formation, was administered to patients with advanced solid tumors. Moore’s findings indicate that the new therapy is well-tolerated with minimal side effects.

Kurkjian presented promising findings from a first-in-human study of ME-143, a second generation isoflavone-derived compound that is broadly active against human cancers in both clinical and pre-clinical testing. Her findings confirmed that the medication was well-tolerated when administered by IV.

“A strong presence at this year’s ASCO meeting highlights the cutting-edge experimental therapeutics research occurring in Oklahoma. In just two and a half years the Phase I Program has joined the top such programs in the nation, benefitting patients who otherwise would need to leave the state or run out of treatment options,” said Scott McMeekin, MD, director of the Oklahoma TSET Phase I Program and the deputy director for clinical research at the Stephenson Cancer Center. McMeekin appears as co-author on three ASCO presentations this year.

“The selection of these Stephenson Cancer Center physicians to present their findings at this prestigious conference of cancer professionals is a tribute to their talents as both researchers and clinicians. It also highlights the importance of the fast-growing Phase 1 clinical trials program at the Stephenson Cancer Center,” said Dewayne Andrews, MD, MACP, Senior Vice President and Provost of the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center and Executive Dean of the OU College of Medicine.

The annual meeting brings together more than 34,000 oncology professionals from a broad range of specialties around the world. Presentations are submitted from 135 countries.