Research Discovery at ActoKine Therapeutics
Two product candidates: AK-1 as adjunct to cancer therapy and AK-2 as anti-viral drug
A cytokine which is produced by activated lymphocytes (not by macrophages) we named AK-1 was discovered to protect a variety of normal cells in vitro and in vivo against radiation-mediated damage to the bone, gut, platelets, and blood cells (Fig 1). In addition, AK-1 sensitizes tumor cells to killing by radiation. AK-1 also significantly reduces the toxic side effects of chemotherapy, such as hair loss. However, AK-1 does not protect tumor cells, but actually increases their susceptibility to killing effects of chemotherapeutic drugs. This patented cytokine AK-1 appears to have four indications (Fig 2): 1. Protecting normal cells against radiation while not protecting tumor cells. 2. Protecting normal cells against chemotherapy while not protecting tumor cells. 3. Sensitizing tumor cells to radiation while not sensitizing normal cells กค 4. Sensitizing tumor cells to chemotherapy while not sensitizing normal cells Fig 2
Thus, target genes induced by AK-1 in normal cells but not in tumor cells will be used for screening for small molecule drugs to replace AK-1 for protection of normal cells against cancer therapy mediated toxicity (Fig 3).
In addition to AK-1, Actokine has identified AK-2 that prptects normal cells against viral infection by different virus. Importantly, AK-2 also selectively kills cells that have been infected with virus (Fig 4).