Celiac.com 09/10/2007 - Nuvelo has announced Phase 1 trials of NU206 (R-spondin1) gastrointestinal growth factor product on cancer patients who are receiving radiation or chemotherapy treatment for cancer.

NU206 is a recombinant, secreted protein that early animal studies show to act as a highly specific stimulator of the gastrointestinal (GI) epithelial cells. Preclinical studies suggest NU206 promotes growth and regeneration of gastrointestinal tissues in animal models of radiation and chemotherapy treatment for cancer, as well as in animal models of inflammatory bowel disease and short bowel syndrome. They expect to follow shortly thereafter with trials on patients with IBD.

Mice deficient in IL-10 with drug-inducted colitis serve as research models for human IBD. Studies on such mice show that R-spondin1 substantially prevents mucosal damage and restored mucosal integrity.

The implications for repairing and preventing mucosal damage in celiac disease are obvious. In addition to restoring other normal mucosal functions, rapid mucosal repair in celiacs through the use of NU206 therapy would provide relief from the problems caused by increased intestinal permeability.

Gastroenterology. 2007 April; 132(4) pgs 1331-1343

health writer who lives in San Francisco and is a frequent author of articles for Celiac.com.

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