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The Repurposing Drugs in Oncology (ReDO) project

We would like to share with you some information about the REDO project which has just been launched by the AntiCancer Fund and Global Cure.

The Repurposing Drugs in Oncology (ReDO) project is an international collaboration initiated by Anticancer Fund and Global Cure, all working in the not-for-profit sector. Our goal is to seek new and effective treatments with low toxicity that meet the needs of existing patients in as short a time-frame as possible and at a cost that is affordable both in developed and developing countries.

Repurposing consist in using t existing and well-characterised non-cancer drugs as new treatments for cancer – either as additions to existing drug protocols or in novel combinations with multiple repurposed drugs. Drug repurposing can be seen as a response to the productivity issues in current drug development, as well as a strategy to reduce development times and as a source of low-cost treatments to meet the increased demands and unmet needs of cancer patients. We feel that repurposing may represent an untapped source of novel therapies.

There is no shortage of drug candidates for repurposing, and there are too many candidate drugs with some potential activity that warrants some degree of investigation. However, there are candidate drugs for which there is a higher degree of evidence. Often the evidence is dispersed, unsummarised or otherwise obscured. The ReDO project aims at :
- Identifying the most promising drugs for further clinical investigation
- Reviewing and bringing to the attention of clinical investigators the data for these drugs
- Documenting on how these drugs can be combined with existing therapies, or with other repurposed drugs
- Developping clinical trials to provide positive or negative evidence of efficacy Where necessary, suggest areas where further pre-clinical work is necessary

The REDO project will start by focussing on the following drugs :

- Mebendazole : Used to treat infection by threadworms and other parasitic words
- Cimetidine : an antacid used to treat stomach ulcers.
- Nitroglycerin: a vasodilator used for the treatment for angina.
- Itraconazole: an anti-fungal
- Diclofenac: a NSAID
- Clarithromycin: an antibiotic used in the treatment of upper respiratory tract infections.

Read more about the REDO project on the dedicated website here