ACT Funds Brown Cancer Center Research Scientist to Accelerate Identification of Clinical Candidates
News Feb 04, 2010
Advanced Cancer Therapeutics (ACT) has announced that it has signed an agreement to leverage the computational chemistry expertise of Dr. John Trent, Associate Professor, Department of Medicine at the University of Louisville’s James Graham Brown Cancer Center (Brown Cancer Center), to accelerate the identification of new clinical candidates for the prevention and treatment of cancer.
“His computational chemistry efforts will complement our current medicinal chemistry efforts which look at the crystal structure of each target to help ACT rationally design and identify the best anti-cancer products.”
As part of this agreement, over the next twelve months Dr. Trent will provide contract work for ACT and interface with ACT’s medicinal chemists to identify the best preclinical candidates for ACT’s top two small molecule compound programs addressing two novel cancer targets in the area of cancer metabolism. These programs include 6-phosphofructo-2-kinase/fructose-2,6-biphosphatase 3 (PFKFB3) and Choline Kinase (CK).
ACT obtained worldwide exclusive licenses from the Brown Cancer Center to the PFKFB program in 2008 and for the CK program in 2009.
To date, ACT has rationally designed and synthesized over 200 novel small molecule compounds against both PFKFB and CK targets. The company has been able to identify several potential preclinical candidates with desired selectivity and potency parameters and other attractive attributes, bringing them closer to initiating toxicology studies that would support an investigational new drug (IND) application.
Establishing this collaboration with Dr. Trent will allow the company to integrate computational chemistry into ACT’s medicinal chemistry activities and should enable ACT to select the best preclinical candidate for both the PFKFB and CK program, as well as prioritize related backup compounds.
“ACT is pleased to be working with Dr. Trent as we collaborate to accelerate the discovery process to develop potentially lifesaving therapeutics for cancer patients,” said Randall Riggs, President & CEO of ACT. “His computational chemistry efforts will complement our current medicinal chemistry efforts which look at the crystal structure of each target to help ACT rationally design and rapidly identify the best anti-cancer products.”
Scientists from the UNC School of Medicine discovered that the anti-inflammatory protein NLRP12 normally helps protect mice against obesity and insulin resistance when they are fed a high-fat diet. The researchers also reported that the NLRP12 gene is underactive in people who are obese, making it a potential therapeutic target for treating obesity and diabetes.READ MORE