ARTICLE | Emerging Company Profile

VCN: Anti-tumor Ad-vantages

VCN Biosciences' oncolytic virus penetrates tumor stroma to treat pancreatic cancer

November 15, 2010 8:00 AM UTC

Pancreatic cancer is highly resistant to drugs because about 80% of the tumor is stroma - normal fibrous and connective tissues that support cancer cell growth and invasion - that compounds cannot penetrate efficiently. To overcome this problem, VCN Biosciences S.L. is developing VCN-01, a genetically engineered adenovirus that selectively penetrates the tumor stroma and replicates in pancreatic tumor cells to kill them.

Pancreatic cancer is a large unmet medical need, with a five-year survival rate of less than 5%, according to the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR). The current standard of care is surgery, and Gemzar gemcitabine from Eli Lilly and Co. is the only drug approved as a first-line therapy to treat locally advanced or metastatic pancreatic cancer when surgery is not feasible...