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默克雪兰诺、ICR与Wellcome Trust合作开发新型抗癌药物

  1. 默克雪兰诺
  2. ICR
  3. Wellcome Trust
  4. 端锚聚合酶

来源:生物谷 2014-10-08 16:34

制药巨头默克雪兰诺公司最近宣布将与英国癌症研究中心(ICR)和Wellcome Trust合作进行相关抗癌药物的研究。

2014年10月8日讯 /生物谷BIOON/ --制药巨头默克雪兰诺公司最近宣布将与英国癌症研究中心(The Institute of Cancer Research ICR)和Wellcome Trust合作进行相关抗癌药物的研究。这种抗癌药物的研究主要是以一种名为端锚聚合酶为基础。端锚聚合酶是一种多聚腺苷二磷酸核糖聚合酶,前期研究发现这种酶直接作用于Wnt信号通路,而后者与多种癌症的发生有着密切关系。研究人员希望寻找到一种能够阻断端锚聚合酶的药物分子,并检测其是否具有抗癌作用。

据了解,默克雪兰诺公司和Wellcome Trust将负责提供资金支持,而大部分研究将在癌症研究中心完成,负责此项研究的是ICR的Dr. Chris Lord和Professor Alan Ashworth。而此次研究将以此前由Wellcome Trust投资的课题为基础。Dr. Chris Lord等人表示,对于端锚聚合酶的研究使科学家将治疗癌症的靶点锁定在WNT通路这一具有重要意义的通路上,能够帮助科学家寻找治疗多种癌症的新疗法。而目前ICR的工作人员已经在这一相关领域取得了重要成绩。

根据三方达成的协议,一旦这一药物开发的进程取得预期进展,默克雪兰诺公司将会支付可观的里程碑奖金。而公司除了负责提供相关资金支持外,还将承担药物进入临床研究阶段后的研究工作。

默克雪兰诺公司是德国默克公司旗下的生物医药部门,具有重要地位。近年来默克公司正在对公司的研发系统进行整合重组,然而一直未能见到较好的成效。此次合作也可以看做是公司进一步加强与科研单位合作以深化自身研发单位重组,提高研发效率的措施之一。(生物谷Bioon.com)

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详细英文报道:

Darmstadt, Germany, October 07, 2014 - Merck Serono, the biopharmaceutical division of Merck, The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR), and the Wellcome Trust, London, today announced a co-development and license agreement building on two independent research programs at both the ICR and Merck Serono to identify inhibitors of tankyrase, an enzyme of the poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase family.

The collaboration will be jointly funded by Merck Serono and the Wellcome Trust. The existing drug discovery program at the ICR is supported by a Wellcome Trust Seeding Drug Discovery Award.

In a joint effort, a team led by Dr. Chris Lord and Professor Alan Ashworth at the ICR and a research group at Merck Serono will aim to progress chemical compounds that have emerged from both organizations' tankyrase inhibitor programs towards clinical development. At the end of the collaboration period, Merck Serono will take over full responsibility for the selected clinical development candidate, with the goal of bringing a new cancer therapeutic drug to patients.

Dr. Chris Lord, Team Leader in the Division of Breast Cancer Research at The Institute of Cancer Research, London, said: "Tankyrase inhibitors provide a uniqueopportunity to target one of the most common characteristics of cancer cells - their dependency on the so-called 'Wnt signaling' pathway. Both Merck Serono and the group at the ICR have already made notable progress in developing tankyrase inhibitors. Working with Merck Serono will allow us to jointly accelerate our program with the aim to ultimately make tankyrase inhibitors available to cancer patients."

"We are delighted to work together with Dr. Chris Lord and Professor Alan Ashworth. With this partnership, we aim to harness the already well advanced tankyrase programs at both ICR and Merck Serono and hope to ultimately translate these in to novel treatment options for cancer patients. We will build on a joint compound base of potent tankyrase inhibitors and will leverage both sites' scientific knowledge about the 'Wnt pathway' that plays a major role in signal transduction for tumor growth", saidDr. Andree Blaukat, Head of the Translational Innovation Platform Oncology at Merck Serono. "The interest of the Wellcome Trust shows its belief in our researchers' scientific data. It also shows the importance of academia-industry collaboration models in pharmaceutical development to progress the most promising investigational compounds into clinics with the aim of bringing them to patients."

"This agreement highlights the importance of translational funding, such as the awards provided under the Seeding Drug Discovery scheme, to reduce the risk of drug discovery programs so that they become attractive to partners who have the ability to bring a product to market", said Dr. Ted Bianco, Director of Innovations at the Wellcome Trust. "We welcome the strategic collaboration with Merck Serono, which brings together a world-leading academic drug discovery group, and an industry partner with such a strong commitment to oncology, to give the program the best possible chances of success."

Some of the most promising advances in cancer research have been small-molecule inhibitors which block the activity of members of the poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) enzyme family, which includes the enzyme tankyrase.1

Under the terms of the agreement, Merck Serono will make milestone payments based on achieving regulatory and sales goals plus royalty payments on net sales of future products discovered or developed under the agreement.

 

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