190927 sharjah drugs
New drug combination found in Sharjah dramatically reduces lung tumours it was claimed this week Image Credit: Supplied

Sharjah: Details of a potential new drug combination that can dramatically shrink lung tumours was revealed at the ‘Recent Perspectives on Cancer Research’ forum in Sharjah on Wednesday.

Professor Julian Downward, Associate Research Director of the Francis Crick Institute in the UK, announced the breakthrough after two years of work at the UK Institute’s Sharjah Laboratory.

Tests were done on mice and human cells but the possibility of trials on humans in the coming years was also suggested.

Downward said: “The establishment of the Sharjah Laboratory at the Francis Crick Institute has enabled us to carry out studies into potential cancer treatments. Recently, we discovered that combining a new class of drug with two other compounds dramatically shrinks lung tumours in mice and human cancer cells. Our results suggest trying this combination in human trials in the coming years. Thanks, in part, to the support of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, the work we are doing could ultimately lead to cancer treatments that delay or even prevent drug resistance.”

The forum comes two years after the Sharjah Lab came to fruition following a £500,000 (Dh2.2 million) donation by Her Highness Shaikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Founder and Royal Patron of the Friend’s of Cancer Patients charity, to promote stronger cancer research. After His Highness Shaikh Dr. Sultan bin Mohammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, and his Wife, inaugurated the Lab, Professor Downward’s work has taken a giant leap towards the successful treatment of non-small-cell lung cancer.

His team has been developing a set of active medicines that have showed successful signs of killing infected lung cells and shrinking tumours. The laboratory is home to 1,250 leading scientists from a variety of disciplines, who are collaboratively utilising and investing their research capacities to find underlying causes of serious non-communicable diseases, particularly cancer, and develop new ways to prevent and treat them.