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ADH-1 short for "Adhere" brand name Exherin, is a small, cyclic pentapeptide vascular-targeting drug.
ADH-1 selectively and competitively binds to and blocks N-cadherin, which may result in disruption of tumor vasculature, inhibition of tumor cell growth, and the induction of tumor cell and endothelial cell apoptosis. N-cadherin, a cell- surface transmembrane glycoprotein of the cadherin superfamily of proteins involved in calcium-mediated cell-cell adhesion and signaling mechanisms; may be upregulated in some aggressive tumors and the endothelial cells and pericytes of some tumor blood vessels.
In a pilot study (phase I trial) at Duke Comprehensive Cancer Center, ADH-1 intravenous pretreatment before chemotherapy in metastatic melanoma completely destroyed tumors in half the patients, normally a very deadly cancer. It is being investigated for Advanced extremity melanoma in phase II trials.
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