Navigation Links
'Green chemistry' could ease manufacture, boost usefulness of cancer drug
Date:4/2/2009

EAST LANSING, Mich. --- Research by Michigan State University chemist Kevin Walker is paving the way for potentially cleaner, more efficient production of cancer-fighting paclitaxel -- better known as the blockbuster drug Taxol.

First isolated from the bark of the Pacific yew in 1967, paclitaxel has since been made by synthetically modifying an intermediate substance isolated from yew needles using toxic solvents or by fermenting cell cultures.

Walker's method employs natural enzymes instead. "Pharmaceutical companies could reduce the steps involved in making Taxol," he said, "while cutting chemical byproducts."

Walker, an assistant professor of chemistry, biochemistry and molecular biology, studies enzymes that assemble the Taxol molecule in Taxus plants. "This process is like painting from a palette," Walker said. "We can add select colors to the palette from which the enzyme chooses, so the molecule can be crafted in a variety of ways. The enzyme does all the work.

"A plant enzyme can do in one step what traditional synthetic construction does in multiples steps," Walker said. "Under our process, the construction of Taxol uses a biological assembly line where each enzyme does its job to create the final product. Particular enzymes on the assembly line can attach slightly different components on the molecular frame to create new-generation Taxol molecules. This can lead to more effective drug variants and eventually better health care treatment."

Taxol "is definitely a frontline drug and is used to treat many cancers," including those of the breast, lung, head and neck, said Barbara Conley, chief of the MSU Department of Medicine's hematology and oncology division.

With a world bulk paclitaxel market generating revenues of $195 million in 1997, potential new uses for conditions such as Alzheimer's disease and tuberculosis are expected to help boost the world market 10 percent by 2012, according to Global Industry Analysts Inc.

Walker's team's research was funded by the Michigan Agricultural Experiment Station. "The science and technology of plants and natural systems is becoming increasingly relevant in human medicine as scientists look for greater efficiencies and 'greener' ways of manufacturing drugs and other health care products," said MAES director Steve Pueppke. "Engaging in research that leads to improvements in human and animal health is a large and important part of the MAES mission."

us plants. "This process is like painting from a palette," Walker said. "We can add select colors to the palette from which the enzyme chooses, so the molecule can be crafted in a variety of ways. The enzyme does all the work.

"A plant enzyme can do in one step what traditional synthetic construction does in multiples steps," Walker said. "Under our process, the construction of Taxol uses a biological assembly line where each enzyme does its job to create the final product. Particular enzymes on the assembly line can attach slightly different components on the molecular frame to create new-generation Taxol molecules. This can lead to more effective drug variants and eventually better health care treatment."

Taxol "is definitely a frontline drug and is used to treat many cancers," including those of the breast, lung, head and neck, said Barbara Conley, chief of the MSU Department of Medicine's hematology and oncology division.

With a world bulk paclitaxel market generating revenues of $195 million in 1997, potential new uses for conditions such as Alzheimer's disease and tuberculosis are expected to help boost the world market 10 percent by 2012, according to Global Industry Analysts Inc.

Walker's team's research was funded by the Michigan Agricultural Experiment Station. "The science and technology of plants and natural systems is becoming increasingly relevant in human medicine as scientists look for greater efficiencies and 'greener' ways of manufacturing drugs and other health care products," said MAES director Steve Pueppke. "Engaging in research that leads to improvements in human and animal health is a large and important part of the MAES mission."


'/>"/>

Contact: Mark Fellows
mark.fellows@ur.msu.edu
517-884-0166
Michigan State University
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Green Tea May Brew Up Healthier Skin
2. Lettuce, leafy greens and E. coli
3. Houston Texans Star Players Ahman Green and Matt Schaub Help Easter Seals, Avondale House and Local Families Tackle Autism
4. ComPsych(R) Corp. Announces Health at Work(SM) Award Winners: Sprint, Erie Insurance, City of Naperville and Green Hills Public Library
5. Statement by Robert Greenstein, Executive Director of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, on the New Congressional SCHIP Agreement
6. Green Seal Ramps Up Environmental Standard for Household Cleaners
7. PureCart Systems of Green Bay, Wis., is an Honored Recipient of an iParenting Media Award
8. Kaiser Permanente Named Green Electronics Champion by EPA, Green Electronics Council
9. Walgreens Launches New Health Essentials Catalog and Website for AARP Members Featuring More Than 20,000 Health-Related Products
10. Green Pet Products Introduces a New, Innovative Process to the Small Animal and Bird Litter/Bedding Category
11. A History of Philanthropy Made Green-certified Legend Homes an Easy Choice for Extreme Makeover: Home Edition
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
'Green chemistry' could ease manufacture, boost usefulness of cancer drug
(Date:6/26/2017)... ... June 26, 2017 , ... KICKICO , a protocol ... that pledges to solve many catastrophic issues within funding campaigns. KICKICO developers are testing ... notion of crowdfunding - the raising of funds through the power of many - ...
(Date:6/25/2017)... ... ... FCPX LUT Vintage Volume 2 for Final Cut Pro X allows users ... contains 60 different color-grade presets, giving editors multiple options for adding different color options. ... subjects, plus much more. FCPX LUT Vintage Volume 2 is designed for any skill-set ...
(Date:6/25/2017)... ... June 25, 2017 , ... Republicans in the United ... replace Obamacare, called the Better Care Reconciliation Act. It differs significantly from the American ... need to be reconciled in committee, or the House will have to take up ...
(Date:6/25/2017)... ... June 25, 2017 , ... CareSet Labs released the Root NPI Graph ... is a new, greatly improved version of the Doctor Referral teaming dataset commonly available ... Trotter and subsequently called the the “Doctor Referral Dataset” as released by Medicare and ...
(Date:6/25/2017)... ... ... Men’s Health Month and the focus is on prostate cancer. Second only to ... the third most common cause of cancer related death today; lung cancer remains in the ... with prostate cancer during his lifetime. Those at highest risk are men who ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/9/2017)... , June 9, 2017 AirXpanders, Inc. (ASX: ... on the design, manufacture, sale and distribution of the ... the progress of its commercial roll-out in ... in more than one hundred (100) medical institutions and ... AeroForm offers a needle-free alternative for women who choose ...
(Date:6/8/2017)... , June 8, 2017  StatLab Medical ... developer and manufacturer of diagnostic supplies for ... that Cressey & Company LP ("Cressey & ... completed a growth-focused investment in the Company. ... ownership position from selling shareholder, Prairie Capital, ...
(Date:6/5/2017)... The Cincinnati location of Diplomat Specialty ... has been awarded a Top Workplaces 2017 honor ... based on an employee survey administered by WorkplaceDynamics, LLC, a ... survey measures several aspects of workplace culture, including alignment, execution, ... ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: