Pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim has expanded its collaboration with Vanderbilt University to fight Kirsten Rat Sarcoma viral oncogene (KRAS), a molecular switch that plays a key role in the onset of some of the deadliest cancers.
Officials said the initial collaboration was a combination of Boehringer Ingelheim's drug discovery and clinical development, with the research in the laboratory of Stephen W. Fesik, Orrin H. Ingram II professor in cancer research at Vanderbilt University.
The new collaboration adds to a joint project that began in 2015, which achieved two goals by identifying lead compounds that bind to KRAS, officials said.
These discoveries raised the prospect of developing new cancer treatment options based on molecules that are able to block KRAS, according to an announcement.
“We are very encouraged by the successful identification of inhibitors of KRAS in our alliance with Professor Fesik and his team at Vanderbilt University and look forward to expanding our collaboration,” Clive R. Wood, senior corporate vice president, discovery research at Boehringer Ingelheim, said in the announcement.
“With new technologies and the scientific discoveries made by Professor Fesik’s laboratory, we believe the time is now right to step up research efforts to develop novel cancer treatments that work by attacking KRAS and associated signaling pathways,” Wood said.
Boehringer Ingelheim, Vanderbilt University partner to expand cancer research
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