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New Elsevier report highlights progress towards disease-modifying treatments for pancreatitis

Study powered by text mining highlights the emergence of trending terms in pancreatitis scientific literature and reveals potential drug targets

Elsevier, a global leader in research publishing and information analytics, has published the findings from a new report on emerging trends for pancreatitis in the scientific literature. Acute pancreatitis is the most common GI-related cause for hospitalization in the US; currently, there are no disease-modifying drugs available for the condition. The analysis was conducted with the aid of Natural Language Processing (NLP), which identified terms found to have the greatest increase in publication occurrences in pancreatitis literature over the past three years. The report examines the emergence of trending terms in the taxonomy categories ‘Biological Functions’ and ‘Proteins and Genomic Elements’, as well as compounds used in animal models and/or the clinic to interrogate potential therapeutic targets.

The terms in the proteins and genomic elements taxonomy category identified as trending (i.e., found within the literature with increasing frequency) were NLRP3, miR-155, and heme oxygenase (HO-1). Several drugs are in early clinical trials targeting the NLRP3 inflammasome for other inflammatory diseases – including Inzolemid from Inflazome (NCT04015076), DFV890 from Novartis (NCT04382053 & NCT04868968), NT-1067 from NodThera, and Dapansutrile from Olatec (NCT03534297, EudraCT 2016-000943-14, & NCT04540120).

“Identifying proteins and genes that are shown to be linked to pancreatitis is crucial to improving diagnostics and discovering potential drugs targets for a disease with few treatment options”, comments Dr Eric Gilbert, consultant at Elsevier and author of the report. “By taking advantage of NLP and Elsevier’s access to the vast scientific literature, insights can be uncovered that would be hard to obtain otherwise.”

Further findings from the report include:

  • A Chinese herbal medicine approved for heart failure in China was found to upregulate HO-1 in rats with induced severe acute pancreatitis. The treated rats showed protection against inflammatory organ damage.
  • Trending terms identified in the Biological Functions taxonomy category were neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) formation and polarization.
  • All of the terms discussed have been validated as potential targets by demonstrating positive impacts on pancreatitis biomarkers in in vivo animal models.

As the volume and variety of scientific research continues to grow, conducting reports like this helps refocus the industry on the trends that are most likely to lead to breakthroughs. They are also a valuable tool: for showing key stakeholders that the industry is making progress towards treatments, to identify potential research partners and collaborators, and to attract new funding to the area.

The full report from Elsevier’s Professional Services group looks at ongoing pancreatitis R&D, the biology and mechanisms of the disease, general knowledge gaps, and potential therapeutics. Access and download the report for free: Emerging Trends for Pancreatitis in the Scientific Literature.



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Last Updated: 07-Oct-2021