Repurposing Old Drugs as New Therapies for Metastatic Thyroid Cancer
Principal Investigator: Dr. Paul Swiecicki
Disease: Thyroid Cancer
Research Description: Thyroid cancer is the sixteenth most common malignancy in the world. Although most patients are cured with a combination of surgery, radioactive iodine therapy, and thyroid stimulating hormone suppression, approximately 15% of patients will develop treatment-resistant (refractory) disease. In the U.S. alone, roughly 9,400 patients fall into this category each year. Currently, the treatment options for refractory thyroid cancer are limited and are mostly palliative in intent. Previous molecular and genomic analyses in thyroid cancer have identified potential targets for repurposed therapeutics. The research team looked at other cancers with similar targets, and saw they responded to a combination of the generic drugs cyclophosphamide and sirolimus. The team tried this combination in patients with aggressive thyroid cancer and anecdotally had success. They now propose a clinical trial repurposing cyclophosphamide and sirolimus to evaluate if this is a safe and effective combination therapy to treat refractory thyroid cancer. This is of profound interest given the lack of current treatment options in the patient population and potential healthcare cost savings with this repurposed combination.
Funding Partners: Anonymous
CWR funding role: Participating funder