Date: 2012-09-06

Type of information: R&D agreement

Compound: drug candidates targeting an undisclosed epigenetic target in a blood cancer

Company: Astex Pharmaceuticals (USA) Cancer Research Technology (UK) The Institute of Cancer Research (UK)

Therapeutic area: Cancer - Oncology

Type agreement:


Action mechanism:

Disease: undisclosed blood cancer with high unmet medical need


Astex Pharmaceuticals, an american pharmaceutical company dedicated to the discovery and development of novel small molecule therapeutics, Cancer Research Technology Limited (CRT) and The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) have initiated a collaboration to discover and develop drug candidates targeting an undisclosed epigenetic target in a blood cancer with high unmet medical need.
The collaboration combines Astex\'s world-renowned fragment-based drug discovery platform and epigenetic drug development experience with the expertise in blood cancer biology at The Institute of Cancer Research  and proven success in drug discovery at the Cancer Research UK Cancer Therapeutics Unit at the ICR.
Dysregulated epigenetic mechanisms are now understood to underlie a variety of cancer types, and have been successfully targeted by the first generation of epigenetic anticancer drugs. In some cases, specific epigenetic mutational events can be linked to disease etiology, providing an opportunity to develop highly targeted personalized medicines and associated companion diagnostics that will ultimately improve survival and reduce side effects.
This new partnership builds on the highly successful collaboration which Astex entered into with the ICR and CRT in 2003 on another cancer target, PKB/Akt. That collaboration led to the discovery of two clinical candidates, the first of which, AZD5363, was taken into Phase I by Astex\'s partner AstraZeneca in early 2011 and the second of which, AT13148, is being prepared to be taken into Phase 1 under our development partnership with Cancer Research UK .

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Is general: Yes