Dr. Benjamin Musher to Chair Phase 1-2 Study Evaluating XBiotech’s Natrunix™ Anti-Cancer Therapy in Pancreatic Cancer


AUSTIN, Texas, Sept. 08, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- XBiotech Inc. (NASDAQ: XBIT) (“XBiotech”) today announced that Benjamin Musher M.D., will chair XBiotech’s clinical program for pancreatic cancer. The Company is developing a novel cancer drug, Natrunix™, to be used in combination with cytotoxic anti-cancer agents. Natrunix™ specifically blocks a substance that has been shown to stimulate tumor blood supply and break down connective tissue, which can support tumor growth and destruction of healthy tissue. The anti-inflammatory activity of Natrunix™ is also being evaluated for its ability to reduce the toxicity and injury caused by the cytotoxic anti-cancer agents themselves.

XBiotech’s pancreatic cancer program, 1-BETTER, launched with a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled Phase 1-2 study, allows the Company to evaluate dose levels, drug interaction and anti-cancer activity for Natrunix™. Dr. Musher is Medical Director of Medical Oncology at Dan L. Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center and Associate Professor at Baylor College of Medicine. Dr. Musher is a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology and has authored numerous peer-reviewed articles in oncology, including treatments for pancreatic cancer. In addition to Natrunix™, Dr. Musher has investigated cutting-edge pancreatic cancer therapies, including the use of tumor-targeting viruses. He has also researched and published on clinical practices relating to the treatment of pancreatic cancer, to better understand the decision-making processes and challenges faced by oncologists in the treatment of this extremely challenging form of cancer.

As chair of the 1-BETTER pancreatic cancer program, Dr. Musher will lead the clinical program and personally treat pancreatic cancer patients at the Dan L. Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center, at St. Luke’s Hospital in Houston, Texas. Dr. Musher stated, “Pancreatic cancer is a devastating disease and remains the third leading cause of cancer-related death in the United States. Most patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer are eligible for only cytotoxic chemotherapy, which generally yields short-lived responses and can cause significant toxicity. More effective and rationally designed therapies are therefore desperately needed. By targeting cancer-related inflammation, Natrunix™ may facilitate better control of tumor growth, reduce toxicity from chemotherapy, and improve well-being of patients with advanced pancreatic cancer.”

Dr. Musher will oversee the 1-BETTER study that will involve at least 20 other leading cancer centers around the country. The study will evaluate Natrunix™ in combination with ONIVYDE and 5-fluorouracil and generate preliminary data on overall survival, progression-free survival, time-to-treatment failure, and objective response rates. Numerous quality-of-life measures will also be explored, hopefully showing a reduction in chemotherapy-related toxicity.

John Simard, President and CEO of XBiotech commented, “We are honored to have Dr. Musher chair this study for which we are eagerly anticipating results.”

About True Human™ Therapeutic Antibodies
XBiotech’s True Human™ antibodies are derived without modification from individuals who possess natural immunity to certain diseases. With discovery and clinical programs across multiple disease areas, XBiotech’s True Human™ antibodies have the potential to harness the body’s natural immunity to fight disease with increased safety, efficacy and tolerability.

About XBiotech
XBiotech is a fully integrated global biosciences company dedicated to pioneering the discovery, development and commercialization of therapeutic antibodies based on its True Human™ proprietary technology. XBiotech currently is advancing a robust pipeline of antibody therapies to redefine the standards of care in oncology, inflammatory conditions and infectious diseases. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, XBiotech is also leading the development of innovative biotech manufacturing technologies designed to more rapidly, cost-effectively and flexibly produce therapies urgently needed by patients worldwide. For more information, visit

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Kaitlyn Hopkins
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