BERKELEY HEIGHTS, N.J., April 9, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Cyclacel Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq:CYCC) (Nasdaq:CYCCP) ("Cyclacel" or the "Company") today announced updated data from an open label, single arm, Phase 1 escalation trial of the Company's two product candidates, sapacitabine, a nucleoside analogue, and seliciclib, a cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) inhibitor, as an orally-administered sequential treatment regimen in heavily-pretreated patients with advanced solid tumors. Data were presented as an oral presentation during the 104 th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Cancer Research (AACR) 2013 in Washington, D.C. "We are encouraged by the responses seen with the sequential administration of sapacitabine and seliciclib in patients who carry a BRCA mutation," said Geoffrey Shapiro, M.D., Director, Early Drug Development Center, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, Harvard Medical School. "Our findings have shown that some patients who carried a BRCA mutation achieved durable partial responses and prolonged stable disease by this treatment regimen." "The promising findings of Dr. Shapiro's work on the Phase 1 study show that sequential treatment with sapacitabine and seliciclib is tolerable and active," said Judy Chiao, M.D., Vice President Clinical Development and Regulatory Affairs of Cyclacel. "This clinical observation may be directly related to the drugs' mechanism of action acting on the ability of cancer cells to undergo DNA repair through the homologous recombination or HR pathway. If these preliminary findings are confirmed by further work, these drugs may provide an important treatment alternative for patients with BRCA-deficient cancers." Based on these emerging results, the investigators continue to enroll an enriched population of patients who carried a BRCA mutation in the trial, in whom the combination has been most efficacious. Additional schedules of the combination therapy are under evaluation. BRCA mutation carrier status and homologous recombination defect (HRD) status may be potential biomarkers for response to this combination across multiple tumor types.