Irish drug company signs research deal with Texas university

Inflection Biosciences working on new way to block spread of cancer cells in patients

The collaboration between Inflection Biosciences and the University of Texas Cancer Center  aims to explore the effects of the company’s pipeline of potential cancer treatments in head and neck cancer.

The collaboration between Inflection Biosciences and the University of Texas Cancer Center aims to explore the effects of the company’s pipeline of potential cancer treatments in head and neck cancer.

 

Dublin drug development company Inflection Biosciences has signed a research deal with the University of Texas Cancer Center (MD Anderson).

The start-up is working on a new approach to blocking the spread of cancer cells in patients.

The collaboration aims to explore the effects of the company’s pipeline of potential cancer treatments in head and neck cancer.

The research will be carried out at the Texas facility by Prof Xiuning Le and Prof Maura Gillison, who is a leading expert on HPV and oral cancer. Her work points to a crucial role for PIM and PI3K in the origin and development of certain head and neck cancers.

Inflection’s lead drug is designed to stop cancer spreading through the PI3K pathway and also via a gene known as the PIM2 kinase, which is now thought to be a regular back-up pathway for cancer cells when PI3K is blocked. A number of existing drugs target PI3K, but none as yet inhibits both it and PIM2.

“The team involved in this research are leaders in the field of head and neck cancer research and will enhance our understanding of the potential for our treatments in cancer patients,” said Dr Michael O’Neill, director of research and development at Inflection Biosciences.

Head and neck cancers are a difficult to treat group of cancers responsible for more than 300,000 deaths worldwide each year.

Inflection is also studying the potential for its drug in tackling aggressive, treatment-resistant beast cancer.