Cancer Research Technology Ltd. (CRT), Cancer Research UK’s technology development arm, and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (NYSE:TEVA) have signed a multi-project alliance agreement to research and develop first-in-class cancer drugs that modulate DNA damage and repair response (DDR) processes in cancer cells.
DDR plays a key role in protecting cancer cells from the damaging effect of chemotherapy – creating an in-built antidote to the toxic effects of the anti-tumor drug. As the cancer cells that are best able to repair the DNA damage caused by the cancer treatments survive, they replicate, naturally selecting for the mutation with the enhanced repair capability – leading to recurrence and resistance to treatment.
Cancer Research UK and CRT has created a world-class hub of expertise in DDR-related basic, translational, and clinical research that is leading the field; building the understanding that will hopefully enable “smarter” use of this very interesting approach in the development of new treatment options.
Based on Cancer Research UK's extensive network of leading UK universities, and its five cancer research institutes (Gray Institute, Oxford; Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute; London Research Institute; Paterson Institute, Manchester; and the Beatson Institute, Glasgow), this hub will provide the foundations for CRT's and Teva's work towards developing novel therapies based on DDR-related targets for the treatment of cancer.
“For cancer patients, it is important that we maintain the momentum of progress that has been made in oncology in recent years," said Dr. Michael Hayden, President, Teva Global R&D and Chief Scientific Officer. “Cancer Research UK, CRT, and their outstanding academic partners, are a driving force in the improved understanding of cancer and its treatment. This research collaboration will build on our understanding of how cells repair DNA damage, help us identify possible points of therapeutic intervention, and lead us onto a pathway toward improve clinical outcomes for cancer patients."