Hummelstown, PA (January 5, 2015) – Oncoceutics Inc. and The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center today announced the initiation of a strategic alliance and research collaboration agreement for the clinical development of ONC201, a novel anti-cancer drug.
Earlier preclinical studies of ONC201 have indicated there is merit in further investigation of the drug, which appears to kill cancer cells without harming healthy cells. The Oncoceutics and MD Anderson agreement will result in clinical trials in specific hematologic tumors.
This non-traditional alliance between MD Anderson and Oncoceutics aims to enable the clinical development of a transformative medicine for cancer patients. The collaboration is expected to rapidly identify optimal clinical settings for the use of ONC201 in oncology. The strategic agreement also provides for a sharing of risk and potential commercialization of ONC201.
“We and others have conducted extensive preclinical studies on ONC201 before considering such an agreement and are hopeful that drug may turn into a valuable remedy against several malignancies,” said Michael Andreeff, M.D., Ph.D., chief of molecular hematology and therapy, professor of medicine, and the Paul and Mary Hass Chair in Genetics. “ONC201’s broad activity in a range of tumors, combined with benign toxicity, allows us to offer this clinical trial drug to patients who have exhausted their therapeutic options and can no longer tolerate aggressive treatments.”
“At MD Anderson, we are committed to innovation and transforming novel findings into clinical practice,” said Hagop Kantarjian, M.D., department chair and Kelcie Margaret Kana – Research Chair of Leukemia at MD Anderson. “Our highest goal is to find the gems in the innovative portfolio and expedite their introduction into clinical use. We believe that ONC201 deserves to be explored to verify its potential role as an anti-cancer drug. Ultimately, we strive to give our cancer patients more and better choices.”
“It is a privilege to work with the MD Anderson team on the development of ONC201, and the ambitious nature of the program speaks more than words can tell of the excitement behind the drug,” said Wolfgang Oster, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of Oncoceutics.
Oncoceutics, Inc. is a drug discovery and development company targeting the most potent suppressor pathways in human cancer. The Company’s leadership team represents a group of drug development executives with unparalleled success in the industry. Central to Oncoceutics’ scientific and technology base is a focus on drug discovery that engages natural potent tumor suppressor pathways. The first lead compound that came out of this program is ONC201, a small molecule that possesses significant anti-tumor activity in a number of different types of human cancer through a unique mechanism of action. On February 28, 2014 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration accepted the Company’s Investigational New Drug (IND) application.
About MD Anderson
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston ranks as one of the world’s most respected centers focused on cancer patient care, research, education and prevention. MD Anderson is one of only 41 comprehensive cancer centers designated by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). For the past 25 years, MD Anderson has ranked as one of the nation’s top two cancer centers in U.S. News & World Report’s annual “Best Hospitals” survey. MD Anderson receives a cancer center support grant from the NCI of the National Institutes of Health (P30 CA016672).
Lee Schalop, Chief Business Officer
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