QUÉBEC CITY, CANADA, Nov. 8, 2012 /PRNewswire/ - Aeterna Zentaris Inc. (NASDAQ: AEZS) (TSX: AEZ) (the "Company") today presented encouraging preclinical results for disorazol Z cytotoxic conjugates, such as AEZS-125, in ovarian cancer. Results showed the compound's high potential for the treatment of luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) receptor positive tumors. Data were presented by the Company's Director of Preclinical Development, Babette Aicher, PhD, during a poster presentation at the 24 th EORTC-NCI-AACR (ENA) Symposium on "Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics", currently held in Dublin, Ireland. The study is funded through a grant from the German Ministry of Education and Research.
Juergen Engel, PhD, Aeterna Zentaris President and CEO stated, "Disorazol Z cytotoxic conjugates such as AEZS-125, are an extension of our AEZS-108 innovative LHRH receptor targeted platform in oncology. These encouraging results presented at the ENA Symposium will enable us to select a specific drug candidate for further preclinical development expected to start in the first quarter of 2013."
- All conjugates of D-Lys 6 -LHRH and disorazol Z analyzed, demonstrated high potential regarding the treatment of LHRH-receptor positive tumors;
- For all conjugates, including AEZS-125, proof-of-concept could be demonstrated in an LHRH-receptor positive A2780 ovarian cancer xenograft model;
- Experiments are currently under way addressing:
- Correlation of tumor LHRH-receptor expression and treatment efficacy;
- Evaluation of additional tumor models, such as endometrium and triple-negative breast cancer;
- Assessment of early safety parameters and orientating acute toxicity in rodent models.
The poster, " Highly Potent Cytotoxic Conjugates of Disorazol Z Linked to a LHRH-Receptor Targeting Peptide such as AEZS-125, Interfere with Cell Cycle Progression in Human Cancer Cell Lines and Suppress Tumor Growth in a LHRH-Receptor Positive Ovarian Cancer Xenograft Model", B. Aicher, T. Schuster, L. Blumenstein, P. Schmidt, H. Irschik, R. Jansen, R. Mueller, E. Guenther, M. Teifel, can be viewed through this link .About Disorazol Z Cytotoxic Conjugates such as AEZS-125 AEZS-125 is a disorazol Z (AEZS-137) cytotoxic conjugate linked to a Luteinizing Hormone-Releasing Hormone (LHRH)-receptor targeting peptide. Disorazol Z is a novel natural compound isolated from myxobacterium Sorangium cellulosum with outstanding cytotoxic activity. Disorazol Z is a macrocyclic polyketide which is available via fermentation in high yield and purity. Besides tubulin binding, disorazol Z has pro-apoptotic properties and arrested cancer cells in G2 stage of the cell cycle at subnanomolar concentrations. Disorazol Z is an ideal partner for the formation of cytotoxic conjugates with peptides and proteins to selectively target cancer cells.