Updated on 9 October 2013
The private Australian biotechnology company, Genscreen Pty Ltd, has developed extensive intellectual property in the field of drug design targeting the Tm5NM1 protein. Laboratory and animal studies have confirmed the anti-cancer effect and safety of this drug target. Novogen has acquired the technology from Genscreen in a transaction based on a royalty payment of product sales, with no upfront or milestone fees.
"This anti-tropomyosin drug technology perfectly complements Novogen's super-benzopyran drug technology in our quest to deliver comprehensive anti-cancer drug therapy. Our super-benzopyran family of drugs are highly effective against cancer stem cells, a basic requirement of successful longer term cancer therapy," said Dr Graham Kelly, CEO, Novogen.
"But we still need to eliminate all cancer cells and that is where the potential potency of an anti-tropomyosin drug comes in. Rather than relying on a blend of super-benzopyran drugs and currently available standard therapy to achieve across-the-board eradication of all cancer cells, the anti-Tm drugs now give us the opportunity to own the full complement of effective drugs, Dr. Kelly added"
Mr Ian Dixon, CEO, Genscreen, said that, "we have always seen the anti-Tms as an obvious replacement for taxanes, one of the largest-selling class of anti-cancer drugs that are now off patent. But unlike the taxanes, we see the anti-Tms as having so much less toxicity, plus being more broadly active, including against cancers such as melanoma that taxanes have little effect against. We are pleased to put the technology into the hands of a Company with the enthusiasm and expertise to see its potential realised."
Novogen will undertake a program to identify lead compounds, with prostate cancer, melanoma and neuroblastoma the nominal targets.