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Developing new anti-cancer drugs against genetically defined targets

24 months
Approved budget:
Professor Peter Shepherd
Health issue:
Cancer (oncology)
Proposal type:
Joint Research Partnership Project
Lay summary
This major new initiative between New Zealand and China will develop new classes of anti-cancer drugs against highly promising cancer targets PI 3-kinase, SGK3 and YB-1. It combines New Zealand assays, cancer biology and drug development skills with a drug library of nearly 700,000 compounds and high throughput screening capabilities in China. Hits identified in Chinese screens will be refined using our well established skills and experience in drug development, to enhance activity and understand relationships between structure and efficacy, thus developing optimal compounds for use in animal studies and human clinical trials. This builds on active existing collaborations and leverages Chinese co-funding. Mutual benefits include expanding NZ’s technical capability in drug screening and access to compound libraries, while bringing cancer biology, bioinformatics, drug design and development skills to China. This proposal will generate intellectual property and increase New Zealand’s access to the $80 billion p.a. worldwide anticancer drug market.