First patient dosed in Bexion cancer drug trial

Covington-based Bexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc., has dosed the first adult patient in a study to determine whether its new drug can ease nerve damage in chemotherapy patients.

The study will examine the effects of Bexion’s drug, BXQ-350, on cancer patients exposed to certain chemotherapy drugs who experience symptoms from chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy.

CIPN is a nerve-damaging side effect of chemotherapy that is believed to affect 30% to 40% of chemotherapy patients. The symptoms include tingling, pain, and numbness in the hands and feet, possibly causing loss of balance and increased risk of falls.

“CIPN is an enormous problem in which over 700,000 surviving cancer patients per year in the U.S. alone have peripheral neuropathies caused by their prior chemotherapy,” says Bexion CEO Scott Shively.

The trial is being conducted at CTI Clinical Research Center in Cincinnati. The plan is to enroll 20 patients.

Bexion says it plans to report initial data from the study in the third quarter of 2023.

READ MORE: Ten Northern Kentucky startups to watch in 2022

BXQ-350 is Bexion’s leading drug candidate. The company says the drug has shown promise in treating colorectal, brain and other solid tumors, as well as chemotherapy-cased nerve damage.

The company was founded in 2006 as a spinoff from Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. Its early funding was supported by grants from the National Cancer Institute.
Enjoy this story? Sign up for free solutions-based reporting in your inbox each week.

Read more articles by David Holthaus.

David Holthaus is an award-winning journalist and a Cincinnati native. When not writing or editing, he's likely to be bicycling, hiking, reading, or watching classic movies.