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A New Method for Screening of Anti-tumor Agents

Posted on: 07/03/2008

A New Method for Screening of Anti-tumor Agents

Description of Technology: Astrocytomas and glioblastoma multiforme are the most common forms of malignant brain cancer, and are often unresponsive to surgical removal and pharmacological therapy. The 5 year survival rate of glioblastoma is 5%, thus, making it necessary for the identification of more effective anti-tumor agents. Individuals with the familial cancer syndrome neurofibromatosis type 1 are predisposed to developing multiple tumors including astrocytoma and glioblastoma.

Scientists at NCI have discovered a new technology that will help screen multiple anti-tumor and anti-neurofibromatosis agents in a high throughput assay by using an astrocytoma cell line (KR158) that expresses the luciferase gene under the influence of dual promoters, E2F and CMV.

This new technology distinguishes between cytostatic and cytotoxic compounds, thereby significantly reducing the time and cost required to screen anti-tumor agents.



Can be used in high throughput assays.

Distinguishes between cytostatic and cytotoxic activity of compounds.


Cancer therapeutics.

Gene therapy.

Screening of anti-tumor agents.

Screening of anti-neurofibromatosis agents.

Pharmacology of drugs.

Market: Neurofibromatoses is inherited by many affected individuals and occurs in 1 in 3500 individuals. In addition, between 30 and 50 percent of new cases arise spontaneously through mutation in an individual's genes which can then be passed on to succeeding generations, leading to increased tumor risk. Astrocytomas and glioblastoma multiforme are the most common malignant brain tumor in adults with very poor prognosis.

Development Status: Late-stage.

Inventors: Jessica J. Hawes and Karlyne M. Reilly (NCI).

Patent Status: HHS Reference No. E-038-2008/0--Research Tool. Patent protection is not being sought for this technology.

Licensing Status: Available for non-exclusive licensing.

Licensing Contact: John Stansberry, Ph.D.; 301-435-5236;

Collaborative Research Opportunity: The National Cancer Institute Mouse Cancer Genetics Program is seeking statements of capability or interest from parties interested in collaborative research to further develop, evaluate, or commercialize anti-astrocytoma or anti-neurofibromatosis therapy. Please contact John D. Hewes, PhD., at 301-435-3121 or for more information.



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