4SC AG has announced that its subsidiary 4SC Discovery GmbH, which specializes in the discovery and early-stage research of new compounds, is to receive a research grant of approximately EUR 600,000 for the development of new cancer drugs in the area of personalized medicine.
As part of the Munich-based leading-edge biotech cluster programme m4, the grant will support a research collaboration between 4SC Discovery and the project group for Immune Pharmacology (Dr. Sebastian Kobold) in the department of Clinical Pharmacology headed by Professor Dr. Stefan Endres from the Medical Clinic of the Ludwig-Maximilians University of Munich.
The aim of this collaboration is to advance the preclinical development of so-called TLR7 and TLR8 agonists for use in cancer immunotherapy.
The project is intended to promote the further development of substances which influence the immune system of cancer patients in such a way that the immune system recognizes the cancer cells and destroys them.
Given that the ability of the immune system to react to abnormal cells depends significantly on the immune status and immune competence of the patient, personalized medicine pursues a therapeutic approach which involves a simultaneous biomarker analysis of the particular patients.
The collaboration starts in November 2012 and is scheduled to run for a period of two years.
Dr. Daniel Vitt, Managing Director of 4SC Discovery GmbH and Chief Scientific Officer of 4SC AG, said: 'Alongside epigenetics and cancer stem cells, cancer immunotherapy is definitely one of the most exciting and dynamic areas of current cancer research. 4SC has been researching this field for years now and we are delighted to receive funding from the Munich biotech cluster of excellence, m4, to further intensify this research. Our objective in this subsidized collaboration with Professor Endres from the Medical Clinic of the University of Munich is to perform preclinical tests on our compounds and optimize them so that we can begin the clinical development of the compounds in patients soon.'