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An Israeli biotech company said preliminary research on mice gives it hope of developing a cancer cure "within a year's time" — but it still has years of testing ahead of it before it could get U.S. approval — even if it works for humans.
Accelerated Evolution Biotechnologies (AEBi) told the Jerusalem Post it used peptides, which are a chain of amino acids, to target and kill cancer cells in mice.
"We believe we will offer in a year's time a complete cure for cancer," the company's chairman of the board of directors, Dan Aridor, told the Jerusalem Post in an article published Monday.
The company, however, has only tested the treatment in mice so far and it can take six to seven years to bring cancer drugs from "mouse to market," even when drugmakers receive special permissions from U.S. regulators to speed drug development, Les Funtleyder, health-care portfolio manager at E Squared Capital Management, told CNBC.
"I mean, I'd love there to be a cure for cancer, but I do not believe them in the absence of good human evidence," he said.
The company has not yet published any clinical evidence showing this treatment works in humans. CEO Ilan Morad told the Jerusalem Post that AEBi has only finished its first exploratory mice experiment, which he claims inhibited cancer cell growth.
The Food and Drug Administration, which declined to comment on the company's treatment, has an extensive review process for drug approval in the United States: "Before a drug can be tested in people, the drug company or sponsor performs laboratory and animal tests to discover how the drug works and whether it's likely to be safe and work well in humans. Next, a series of tests in people is begun to determine whether the drug is safe when used to treat a disease and whether it provides a real health benefit," FDA says on its site.
The company acknowledged in an email to CNBC that "complete cure for cancer meaning that we will have the complete solution ready for first tryout in humans. A solution that is supposed to finish the problem without it coming back. Even in the unlikely event that it comes back it can be re-administered\re-adjusted."
Aridor said the company's first target is lung cancer and that it's working on others.