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New collaboration to speed up cancer drug development
Aims to meet the needs of Asian cancer patients through safe and rational development of targeted cancer drug combinations

A new research collaboration between the National Cancer Centre Singapore (NCCS) and AUM Biosciences, a Singapore headquartered biotechnology company, will aim to develop new potential treatments to battle cancer.

The team plans to shorten the time it would normally take to test and develop new drugs, as well as to introduce safe and effective drug combinations.

The collaboration will combine NCCS’ highly-regarded PDX laboratory model capabilities and knowledge on drug discovery, with AUM Bioscience’s expertise in clinical drug development.

Patient Derived Xenograft (PDX) is the grafting of patients’ tumours onto mice, thereby creating valuable human cancer or PDX models. Different drugs can be tested in these PDX models to evaluate their ability to inhibit tumour growth. Success in these models helps in selecting the suitable drug candidates to put forward for testing in actual patients. It can also help guide the drug development process, including developing a better understanding of how cancers respond to treatment. The PDX models have been extensively used to evaluate novel drugs and develop novel combination therapies for various cancers such as liver, gastric and ovarian cancers.

Currently, a new drug takes 9 to 17 years to develop (pre-clinical stages take 1 to 6 years, clinical phases 1 to 3 take about 6 to 11 years to complete). With this new collaboration, it is estimated that the pre-clinical stage (PDX development and testing) will be shortened to 1.5 to 2 years and the clinical phases (Phase 1 to 3) can be completed in a minimum of 6 to 8 years.

This can potentially help address an unmet medical need faster and more efficiently.

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