Biosortia Pharmaceuticals has launched three new oncology research projects. The projects will investigate Biosortia’s unique libraries of consortia microbial compounds for potential drug discovery in pediatric cancer (neuroblastoma), liver cancer (Hepatitis C virus) and an alternative approach to combat tumor growth by stimulating a patient’s immune responses (immuno-oncology). The immune response strategy can have application across a range of cancer targets including pancreatic cancer, liver cancer, myeloma, neuroblastoma and ovarian cancer.
The research will be conducted by researchers at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC - James) and The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in collaboration with Biosortia.
Biosortia is the only company in the world who can fully exploit the chemistry a consortia of culturable and nonculturable microorganisms in aquatic situ. This reservoir of novel chemistry has been described as being superior to tropical rain forests in terms of drug-like chemistry.
The projects include:
William E. Carson III, MD, a surgical oncologist and chair of The Ohio State University’s cancer institutional review board will focus on new therapeutics to stimulate a patient’s immune response (immuno-oncology). The objective of this study is to investigate how inhibition of MDSC and augmentation T cell and NK cells effector functions could enhance a patient’s immune response to cancer. Knowledge gained from this study could help develop alternative approaches to combating cancerous tumor growth.
Zucai Suo, PhD, a professor of chemistry at Ohio State, will research natural product inhibitors for treating liver cancer and viral infections. Liver cancer is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide. A major cause of liver cancer is Hepatitis C virus (HCV), which replicates exclusively in the liver and has chronically infected 170 to 300 million people worldwide. Suo, was The Jane Coffin Childs memorial Fund Postdoctoral Fellow at Harvard University Medical School, a member of the research team at Lilly which successfully developed an FDA and EU approved anti-Hepatitis C virus protease inhibitor based drug in collaboration with Vertex Pharmaceuticals and is also a consultant with Gilead Sciences.
Ruoning Wang, PhD, a childhood cancer and blood disease researcher at Nationwide Children’s Hospital will conduct a study targeting pediatric cancer and the proliferation of neuroblastoma through characteristic mitochondria oxidation. Neuroblastoma, an embryonal cancer of the sympathetic nervous system, is a pediatric solid tumor that accounts for 15 percent of deaths of pediatric cancer patients.
“Dr. Wang is among a cadre of innovative pediatric cancer scientists working at Nationwide Children’s on understanding the biology of childhood cancers,” says John Barnard, MD, president, The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s and chair, Department of Pediatrics at Ohio State. “Team science is essential for discovering the answers to complex challenges such as pediatric cancer. We are particularly excited about the opportunity to collaborate with Biosortia and The James on these promising endeavors.”
"Doctors Wang, Suo and Carson bring extraordinary expertise and a diversity of focus. We are encouraged to be working with them as we strive to deliver targeted therapies that will bring better outcomes in the fight against cancer," says Guy Carter, Ph.D., Biosortia Chief Scientific Officer.
Biosortia Pharmaceuticals, a natural products drug discovery and development company, leverages their unique technologies and nature for the discovery of first-in-class small molecules as potential solutions to high priority unmet needs that will positively impact human health. Together with OSUCCC – The James and Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Biosortia will provide access to pre-optimized small molecule chemistry produced by unculturable aquatic microorganisms for anti-cancer drug discovery.
About The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital
Ranked 9th of only 12 children's hospitals on U.S. News & World Report’s 2014-15 “America’s Best Children’s Hospitals Honor Roll” and among the Top 10 on Parents magazine’s 2013 “Best Children’s Hospitals” list, Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of the nation’s largest not-for-profit freestanding pediatric healthcare networks providing care for infants, children and adolescents as well as adult patients with congenital disease. As home to the Department of Pediatrics of The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Nationwide Children’s faculty train the next generation of pediatricians, scientists and pediatric specialists. The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of the Top 10 National Institutes of Health-funded free-standing pediatric research facilities in the U.S., supporting basic, clinical, translational and health services research at Nationwide Children’s. The Research Institute encompasses three research facilities totaling 525,000 square feet dedicated to research. More information is available at NationwideChildrens.org/Research
About Biosortia Pharmaceuticals Inc.
has a proven and unique ability to obtain unculturable aquatic microbial consortia from the natural environment in unprecedented quantities allowing its research team to discover a diverse array of new natural products. Biosortia is actively engaging pharmaceutical research and development organizations to explore the huge opportunity of technological exploration of aquatic microbial consortia for potential therapeutic agents.