Yale University and the National Foundation for Cancer Research (NFCR) will establish an NFCR Center for Anti-Cancer Drug Design and Discovery to develop new beta-peptide inhibitors. NFCR will provide a five-year, $750,000 grant.
“This new center provides a critical research platform within the worldwide network of NFCR-sponsored scientists that will significantly move our protein research to the forefront of cancer research,” says Alanna Schepartz, the Milton Harris, ’29 Ph.D. professor of chemistry, who will lead the team of researchers along with William Jorgensen, the Whitehead professor of chemistry at Yale.
This NFCR Center atYale will aid in the better understanding of how beta-peptides can be designed to disrupt protein-protein interactions that transmit cell signals that potentially cause cancer growth. Researchers will focus on developing more effective approaches to inhibit these abnormal protein-protein interactions.
The team hopes to create a completely new technology platform for more effective and long-lasting anticancer drugs, since beta-peptides are stable within the human body. In their work, researchers will use experimental chemistry and computer modeling to design and optimize beta-peptide inhibitors of a wide range of targets.
The NFCR Center at Yale will collaborate with scientists from over 40 cancer centers and laboratories at universities and hospitals worldwide.