Year of Award:
Molecular & Cellular Analysis Technologies
XANTHOPOULOS, KLEANTHIS G
Other PI or Project Leader:
AURORA BIOSCIENCES CORPORATION
Our goals are to develop novel methods which rapidly identify genes and lead pharmaceutical compounds in the area of breast cancer. We have developed a gene-tagging method which uses highly sensitive B-lactamase (bla) reporter system to rapidly 1) screen for novel genes with expression profiles responsive to the presence or absence of estradiol, and 2) identify drug candidates with specificity/efficacy profiles different from existing drugs. We hypothesize that this gene tagging strategy can be used to create a set of stably transfected breast cell lines expressing inducible/repressible genes and to rapidly screen for novel anti- cancer agents which prevent modulation of those genes. PROPOSED COMMERCIAL APPLICATION: 1.4 million new cancer cases were estimated in 1997 in the U.S. with medical costs of $35 billion. Sales for breast cancer drugs tamoxifen and taxol are close to $500 million and $800 million respectively. However, standard endocrine drug therapy as well as chemotherapy and treatment with taxoids fail to treat recurring breast cancer. Hence, there is a need for more and improved agents for treatment of recurring and hormone independent breast cancer.