Man’s Best Friend Helping in the Dogfight Against Cancer

Man’s best friend may be turning the tables on the way doctors treat some cancers in humans. Ongoing research at the University of Kansas and the University of Kansas Medical Center using injectable targeted chemotherapy is showing great promise in the treatment of a variety of cancers in dogs and could lead to testing in humans. The JCERT tax supports this research.

The drug HylaPlat was first tested on large-breed dogs with a specific form of oral cancer as part of clinical trials prior to human trials. While researchers are cautiously optimistic about the role this form of injectable targeted chemotherapy can have in humans, they know it’s a long way from receiving Food and Drug Administration approval. In the meantime, dogs of all sizes with different cancers have been tested, so getting the canine version of the drug approved appears to be on the fast track.

“It will be the best feeling knowing that we’ve actually been able to take something from the laboratory out into a little spinout company, and then see it actually get out into the world,” said Daniel Aires, M.D., J.D., president and CEO of HylaPharm, the creator of HylaPlat and director of the division of dermatology at KU Medical Center. “We don’t want to count our chickens before they hatch, but there’s a tremendous excitement. You want to see it start to work and change lives.”