In a preclinical study, Bernards' team will test a combination of SHP2 inhibitors and MEK inhibitors for the treatment of KRAS-mutant pancreatic cancer patients. Emile Voest , together with Hana Algül of Technical University Munich, is to lead the clinical study that will be conducted in a later stage.
The Team has discovered that that tumors carrying an activating KRAS mutation are sensitive to the inhibition of SHP2, a protein that helps the transmission of the growth-promoting signal from the cell surface receptors. Moreover, the team has found that SHP2 inhibitors cooperate with inhibitors of MEK, a key RAS downstream effector, to achieve better control of tumor growth. Given these findings, the researchers have proposed a combination of SHP2 inhibitors and MEK inhibitors for the treatment of KRAS-mutant pancreatic cancer patients.
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