Dr. Picozzi on the Use of SM-88 in Pancreatic Cancer

Vincent J. Picozzi, MD
Published: Tuesday, Jan 29, 2019



Vincent J. Picozzi, MD, director, Pancreatic Center of Excellence, Virginia Mason Medical Center, discusses the use of SM-88 in pancreatic cancer.

SM-88 is an oral therapy, and unlike traditional therapies in pancreatic, it is not a chemotherapy. The novel anticancer regimen is comprised of a tyrosine derivative (D,L-alpha-metyrosine), an mTOR inhibitor (sirolimus), a CYP3a4 inducer (phenytoin), and an oxidative stress catalyst (methoxsalen). The agent has shown promising activity with little toxicity for patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer who have progressed on at least 1 prior line of therapy. Due to the agent’s tolerability, elderly and frail patients are also able to receive the treatment. Physicians and patients alike are eagerly awaiting more data to further prove the agent’s efficacy, says Picozzi.

A physicist came up with the construction of SM-88, adds Picozzi. The agent uses a derivative of an immunoacid tyrosine as a “poisonous pill” to cancer cells. By redirecting the mTOR inhibitor, CYP3a4 inducer, and oxidative stress catalyst, the agent is able to enhance the effect of the altered tyrosine, explains Picozzi.
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Vincent J. Picozzi, MD, director, Pancreatic Center of Excellence, Virginia Mason Medical Center, discusses the use of SM-88 in pancreatic cancer.

SM-88 is an oral therapy, and unlike traditional therapies in pancreatic, it is not a chemotherapy. The novel anticancer regimen is comprised of a tyrosine derivative (D,L-alpha-metyrosine), an mTOR inhibitor (sirolimus), a CYP3a4 inducer (phenytoin), and an oxidative stress catalyst (methoxsalen). The agent has shown promising activity with little toxicity for patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer who have progressed on at least 1 prior line of therapy. Due to the agent’s tolerability, elderly and frail patients are also able to receive the treatment. Physicians and patients alike are eagerly awaiting more data to further prove the agent’s efficacy, says Picozzi.

A physicist came up with the construction of SM-88, adds Picozzi. The agent uses a derivative of an immunoacid tyrosine as a “poisonous pill” to cancer cells. By redirecting the mTOR inhibitor, CYP3a4 inducer, and oxidative stress catalyst, the agent is able to enhance the effect of the altered tyrosine, explains Picozzi.

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