A team of researchers from Brigham & Women’s Hospital, Mass. Institute of Technology and Mass. General Hospital demonstrated that localizing the delivery of NAMPT inhibitors can extend survival in a mouse model of glioma, according to a paper published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
The scientists created a test to check for a mutation linked to glioma and implanted microparticles that slowly elute drug over the course of several days or even weeks to treat the brain cancer.
NAMPT inhibitors, intended to treat people with the IDH1/2 mutation, have not yet been used in glioma patients due to their harsh side effects when delivered systemically and the challenges posed by the body’s blood-brain barrier.
To target the delivery of NAMPT inhibitors, the researchers synthesized microparticles from a polymer, PLGA, that is frequently used in localized drug-delivery efforts. The team of scientists also developed a 30-minute test that could identify patients with the IDH1/2 mutation.
In mice with the mutation, treatment with the drug-loaded microparticles extended survival, according to the researchers. As expected, mice without the IDH1/2 mutation were not helped by the NAMPT inhibitors.
The team also noted that localized delivery eliminated the intense side effects of NAMPT inhibitors in mice.
“There’s no reason this has to be restricted to just gliomas,” lead author Ganesh Shankar told MIT News. “It should be able to be used anywhere where there’s a well-defined hotspot mutation.”