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August 21, 2007

Abraxis and Scripps Ally to Advance Epothilone-Based Oncology Drugs

  • Abraxis BioScience and The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) are collaborating to develop and commercialize an epothilone therapeutic for the treatment of cancer. Epothilones belong to a new class of microtubule-stabilizing agents that reportedly bind to the tubulin pathway to inhibit the growth and proliferation of cancer cells.

    "Our preliminary research suggests the epothilones targeted for development by Abraxis BioScience are some of the most potent agents in this new class of drugs," states K.C. Nicolaou, Ph.D., chair department of chemistry at TSRI.

    Under the exclusive licensing agreement, Abraxis has rights to 11 potential drug candidates for preclinical evaluation. The company will use its nab™ platform, which harnesses the natural properties of the human protein albumin to transport and deliver therapeutic agents to the site of disease.

    The technology eliminates the need for toxic solvents used with other epothilones in development for administration of the anticancer drug into the bloodstream, according to Abraxis.