Navigation Links
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center Partners With GlaxoSmithKline to Develop Muscular Dystrophy Therapeutics
Date:12/10/2012

SEATTLE, Dec. 10, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and GlaxoSmithKline PLC (GSK) today announced a partnership to develop therapeutics to treat an inherited form of muscular dystrophy.  

The goal of the new agreement is to develop a small-molecule-based medicine to potentially reverse facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy, or FSHD, by inhibiting the activity of a protein that is incorrectly expressed by the DUX4 gene in people with the disease. The protein activity is what damages muscle cells and leads to progressive muscle weakness and atrophy in FSHD patients.

The genetic and disease mechanisms of FSHD were discovered by an international team of scientists led by Stephen Tapscott, M.D., Ph.D., a member of the Fred Hutch Human Biology Division, in a series of studies published between 2010 and early 2012. Tapscott will lead the Fred Hutch work in the GSK collaboration.

The team's discoveries also have implications for developing cancer immunotherapies because researchers also discovered that DUX4 regulates cancer/testis antigens. Cancer/testis antigens are encoded by genes that are normally expressed only in the human germ line but are also abnormally expressed in various tumor types, including melanoma and carcinomas of the bladder, lung and liver. This knowledge will give researchers a way to manipulate the expression of cancer/testis antigens, potentially opening the opportunity to use these antigens in a cancer vaccine.

The partnership with GSK is a first of its kind for Fred Hutch, which is also the first U.S.-based institution to sign on with GSK's "Discovery Partnership with Academia" (DPAc) program. GSK launched the program last year to combine the insight and creativity of the academic world with GSK's drug-discovery expertise to turn innovative research into medicines that benefit patients.

GSK currently has DPAc collaborations in place with Cambridge University and the University of Dundee in the U.K.

Unlike traditional licensing agreements in which the licensee is given full control to develop a discovery, the collaboration will involve GSK and Fred Hutch scientists working together to develop, test and hopefully bring to market a clinical treatment.

"GSK has huge expertise in developing agents against protein activity, so our opportunity to work with them is fantastic," Tapscott said.

"At GSK we believe that combining our drug-discovery expertise with the in-depth disease knowledge of specialist academic groups can seed innovation and help speed up the discovery and development of new medicines," said Pearl Huang, global head of DPAc. "We're excited to be expanding our academic program in North America and are looking forward to working closely with scientists like Dr. Tapscott, whose deep understanding of disease biology will complement our own work in this field."

FSHD affects about one in 20,000 individuals and usually begins in late adolescence. The effects start around the facial and upper-extremity muscles and eventually progress to muscles in the lower extremity. People with more severe FSHD become wheelchair bound and their life spans are often shortened.

In an era of flat federal research funding, this collaboration signals an increasing interest on the part of Fred Hutch to develop partnerships that further its lifesaving and innovative research.

"We're looking for more creative academic-industry partnerships like this one between Fred Hutch and GSK," said Ulrich Mueller, vice president of industry relations and technology transfer at Fred Hutch.

Tapscott's research on FSHD, which provides the scientific basis for the collaboration with GSK, was funded by Friends of FSH Research, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, and the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases.

Financial terms of the Fred Hutch-GSK partnership were not disclosed.

At Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, home to three Nobel laureates, interdisciplinary teams of world-renowned scientists seek new and innovative ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer, HIV/AIDS and other life-threatening diseases. Fred Hutch's pioneering work in bone marrow transplantation led to the development of immunotherapy, which harnesses the power of the immune system to treat cancer with minimal side effects. An independent, nonprofit research institute based in Seattle, Fred Hutch houses the nation's first and largest cancer prevention research program, as well as the clinical coordinating center of the Women's Health Initiative and the international headquarters of the HIV Vaccine Trials Network. Private contributions are essential for enabling Fred Hutch scientists to explore novel research opportunities that lead to important medical breakthroughs. For more information visit www.fhcrc.org or follow Fred Hutch on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube.

CONTACT:
Dean Forbes
206-605-0311 cell
206-667-2896 desk
dforbes@fhcrc.org


'/>"/>
SOURCE Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Copyright©2012 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine technology :

1. Actinium Pharmaceuticals Announces The Addition of The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center To Actiniums Multicenter Clinical Trial For Patients With Acute Myeloid Leukemia
2. Artemis Diagnostics awarded two grants from Technology Strategy Board to develop cancer imaging technology
3. Quebec Clinic Launches Canadian Use of Elektas Agility Beam-Shaping Innovation for Radiation Therapy of Cancer
4. German Cancer Research Center Selects Contur ELN from Accelrys
5. MetaStat Announces Presentations at the 2012 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium
6. Prostate Cancer Study: Most Patients Report Satisfaction After Robotic Surgery
7. Eisai Oncology to Present New Research on Eribulin at 35th Annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium
8. Gynecologic Oncology Publishes New Clinical Study Showing Positive Performance of OVA1, Vermillions Ovarian Cancer Test
9. Trovagene to Introduce First Urine-Based Molecular Diagnostic Test for Transrenal Cancer Mutation Monitoring
10. Novartis highlights key data in patients with hematologic diseases and breast cancer with more than 140 abstracts at ASH and SABCS
11. The Oncology Nurse Community To Host Live Webinar On Cancer Pain Management
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/7/2017)...   Provista, a proven leader in the ... purchasing power, today announced a new resource area on ... is the online home for case studies, articles ... news releases, slideshows and events. ... resources at their fingertips, viewers can also watch short ...
(Date:10/2/2017)... , Oct. 2, 2017 Diplomat Pharmacy, ... 8th Day Software and Consulting, LLC , and named ... 8th Day Software, based in Tennessee , ... 8th Day expands EnvoyHealth,s service offerings for health care ... "In an interoperable ...
(Date:9/28/2017)... , Sept. 28, 2017 Hill-Rom Holdings, ... 2017 earnings conference call and webcast on Friday, November ... a.m. (EDT) and ending at approximately 8:30 a.m. (CDT) ... discussing the company,s 2017 financial performance and guidance for ... opportunities, initiatives to enhance operational performance, and long-range financial ...
Breaking Medicine Technology:
(Date:10/13/2017)... , ... October 13, 2017 , ... PurhealthRX , ... Oil utilizing Purzorb™ technology. Applying the Purzorb™process to full spectrum CBD oil will revolutionize ... providing a CBD form that can be easily incorporated into liquid products, while reducing ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... Calif. (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2017 , ... Many ... dementia. However, many long-term care insurance companies have a waiver for care if the ... 90-day elimination period, when the family pays for care, is often waived, so the ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Yisrayl Hawkins, Pastor and Overseer at The House ... most popular and least understood books in the Holy Scriptures, Revelation. The Book of ... baffled scholars for centuries. Many have tossed it off as mere rubbish, but Yisrayl ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... , ... “America On The Brink”: the Christian history of the United States ... creation of published author, William Nowers. Captain Nowers and his wife, Millie, have ... thirty years in the Navy. Following his career as a naval aviator and ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... WAUSAU, Wis. (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 ... ... formulated standard products to meet the demand of today’s consumer and regulatory authorities ... team of probiotic experts and tested to meet the highest standard. , ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):