Boston, MA, 03/07/2014 – Sangamo Biosciences Inc (NASDAQ:SGMO) informed its new findings that treating patients first with a chemotherapy drug perks up their response to an experimental technique to control HIV.
The company presented a new set of data extracted from an early stage trial of its gene modifying treatment, SB-728-T, in the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections which was held in Boston yesterday. On Wednesday, a data was published in the New England Journal of Medicine which was based on an earlier trial of the company. The trial showed the strategy of genetically modifying cells from HIV infected patients could be a potential way of controlling the virus which causes AIDS without using antiviral drugs.
The results presented by the company in the Conference show that administering higher doses of the chemotherapy drug Cytoxan or cyclophosphamide before the injection with SB-728-T resulted in an improved growth of genetically modified cells as well as an increased number of CD4 immune system cells, which would otherwise be prone to HIV. Cytoxan, manufactured by Bristol-Myers Squibb Co (NYSE:BMY), enhances the efficiency of bone marrow transplants in cancer patients and is used as therapy for autoimmune diseases.
A New Method
Sangamo said that it has expanded the Cytoxan preconditioning research to verify the optimal dose of the chemotherapy. It will then treat 12 more subjects using a new RNA method, shifting from the use of a deactivated virus to deliver its gene altering technology that it has been using so far. The company’s spokeswoman, Elizabeth Wolffe said that by using the messenger RNA, which is a single starnd molecule that transmits information communicating cells which protein to produce, patients can be re-treated with SB-728-T.
Soon after the announcement, shares of the Richmond, California based Sangamo Biosciences Inc (NASDAQ:SGMO) surged by 17% to reach $22.92 in the late trading on Nasdaq. With this figure, the company reported to have gained 67% this year.