Tech Transfer eNews Blog

Northwestern inks license with Panther Biotechnologies for enhanced anti-cancer drugs


By David Schwartz
Published: April 8th, 2015

Northwestern University (NU) and Panther Biotechnologies, a company specializing in therapeutics to treat neoplastic and autoimmune disorders, have entered into an exclusive global licensing agreement over technologies designed to enhance a novel category of anti-cancer drugs.

Under the terms of the agreement, Panther has licensed the rights from NU to develop and commercialize the compounds known as Numonafides, which enhance the efficacy and decrease the toxicity of anti-cancer therapeutics. Lab results suggest that Numonafides have a broad spectrum of anti-tumor activity with minimal toxicity and minimal chances of developing drug resistance for blood, cervical, colon, gastric, liver, lung and skin cancers.

The compound’s first target is acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) and may include other cancers such as triple negative breast cancer which have historically relied on treatments that produce severe side effects.

Panther is in the process of conducting additional pre-clinical studies to support an Investigational New Drug submission during the fourth quarter of 2015, with plans to initiate Phase 1 and 2 studies by the end of the year.

“This license agreement with Northwestern provides access to technologies that may allow us to enhance response in patients without dose-limiting toxicities associated with currently used drugs,” says Dr. Jayesh Mehta, MD, a hematologist at NU’s Feinberg School of Medicine and a Panther director. “These novel drugs, the Numonafides, could unlock a new highly effective and minimally toxic treatment paradigm that may even cure a high percentage of patients with AML, and perhaps certain other cancers beyond AML.”

Becky Crump, PhD, associate director at NU’s Innovation and New Ventures Office, comments, “Northwestern University is excited about this collaboration with Panther Biotechnology, an organization that has engaged a highly talented and well respected team to develop Numonafides and transition them to clinical application. Our institution’s intellectual capital and experience in cancer drug discovery and development are highly synergistic with Panther’s experience and strengths in developing and commercializing oncology drugs.”

Source: Yahoo! Finance

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