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New 'Trojan Horse' Treatment Shows Promise For Lymphoma

A new approach that could aid in the treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) has been discovered by researchers at the Saban Research Institute of Children's Hospital Los Angeles.

According to lead researchers Nora Heisterkamp, PhD, and Reshmi Parameswaran, PhD, the treatment involves a fusion toxin that specifically attacks cancer cells like a "Trojan horse."

"Although we have made tremendous progress in the treatment of leukemia, Dr. Heisterkamp and her colleagues' research into drug-resistant disease fills a crucial need," said Brent Polk, MD, director of The Saban Research Institute.

In their research, the team discovered B-cell type lymphocytes house a unique protein on their outer surface accepted into the cell as it reaches maturity. Binding the new fusion toxin to this protein was effective in killing the lymphocytes before they developed fully.

"Although these are laboratory studies, we are very encouraged by our findings and we're actively developing this approach to test in the clinic," Heisterkamp explained in a release.

by RTT Staff Writer

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