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New pill may offer solution to cancer

Words by Tess Becker

Providing new hope for the fight against cancer a new pill that’s been in development for two decades shows a lot of promise. 

Known as AOH1996, it targets a cancerous variant of a protein called proliferating cell nuclear antigen. Early research shows that the “cancer-killing pill” has appeared to “annihilate” solid tumors leaving healthy cells unaffected.

AOH1996 is being worked on by City of Hope, one of America's largest cancer research and treatment organisations.

“PCNA is like a major airline terminal hub containing multiple plane gates,” Professor Linda Malkas, who has been developing the drug, said. “Data suggests PCNA is uniquely altered in cancer cells, and this fact allowed us to design a drug that targeted only the form of PCNA in cancer cells.”

The pill will ideally stop the production of cancer in the body. 

“Our cancer-killing pill is like a snowstorm that closes a key airline hub, shutting down all flights in and out only in planes carrying cancer cells,” she said.

While initial results are promising, the research so far has only concluded that AOH1996 can suppress tumor growth in cell and animal test subjects with the first phase human clinical trials underway.

Charity check-in

At Smiley Movement, we like to elevate the work of charities across the world. Here are three charities whose causes align with the themes in this article.

The Life You Can Save. They work to help end malaria around the world. Consider donating

TB A!ert. They are working towards a future without tuberculosis. Support them here

Doctors Without Borders. Medical workers supporting people through crises. Find out more

This article aligns with the UN SDG Good Health and Wellbeing.

This article aligns with the following UN SDGs