Pluristem PLX cells 'significantly inhibit' cancer cell growth in new study
Pluristem Therapeutics announced the publication of a peer-reviewed article in the journal Scientific Reports, from the publisher of Nature, titled, "Human Placental-Derived Adherent Stromal Cells Co-Induced with TNF-alpha and IFN-gamma Inhibit Triple-Negative Breast Cancer in Nude Mouse Xenograft Models." The article is based on studies which examined the effect of PLX cells that had been induced with tumor necrosis factor alpha and interferon-gamma, on the proliferation of over 50 lines of human cancerous cells. The induction of the cells was carried out by adjusting their manufacturing process in order to transiently alter their secretion profile. Data from the first study showed that the modified PLX cells exhibited an anti-proliferative effect on 45% of the tested cancer cell lines, with a strong inhibitory effect on various lines of breast, colorectal, kidney, liver, lung, muscle and skin cancers. Comprehensive bioinformatics analysis identified common characteristics of the cancer cell lines inhibited by PLX cells. This knowledge could potentially be used in the future for screening patients' tumors to identify those patients most likely to show a positive response to treatment with PLX cells. Based on these promising results, Pluristem conducted a pre-clinical study of female mice harboring human triple negative breast cancer, or TNBC. TNBC is an aggressive form of breast cancer that does not respond to standard hormonal therapy due to a lack of estrogen and progesterone receptors. Current treatment for TNBC consists of a combination of surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy, and yet the prognosis remains poor for patients with this type of breast cancer. In this study, weekly intramuscular (IM) injections of the induced PLX cells produced a statistically significant reduction in mean tumor size in the treated group compared with the untreated group, with 30% of the treated mice exhibiting complete tumor remission. In addition, a statistically significant reduction was seen in the percentage of proliferating tumor cells as well as in the level of blood vessels within the tumors. Pluristem has filed patent applications relating to the technology for the induction of PLX cells and the use of these cells for the treatment of cancer.