The drug may not become available to patients for a number of years yet, but researchers believe that if clinical trials are successful, it could be used to tackle a variety of treatment-resistant cancers.
A team of chemists, biologists, and clinicians at Imperial College London collaborated on creating the new drug. The team was funded by Cancer Research UK and the drug was developed at Imperial, in collaboration with Emory University in the USA.
Early lab-based tests of ICEC0942 were successful in targeting resistant breast cancers and indicated minimal side effects. ICEC0942 was then licensed to Carrick Therapeutics, who developed it into a molecule named CT7001, which they have taken to early-stage clinical trials in less than two years.
The technology licensing process to Carrick Therapeutics was led by Cancer Research UK’s Commercial Partnerships Team and Imperial Innovations, the Technology Transfer Office of Imperial, with support from Emory University.
The first patient was given the drug in November 2017 as part of Carrick’s a Phase I clinical trial to assess its safety and how well it can be tolerated. The trial is still ongoing, so results are not available yet.