Only non-US company joins cancer drug discovery consortium

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Italian research institute and contract research organisation IRBM has become the only company from outside the United States to join cancer drug discovery network the Chemical Biology Consortium (CBC).

The CBC is the discovery engine of the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Experimental Therapeutics (NExT) Program, administered through the Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research (FNLCR), a federal national laboratory sponsored by the NCI, part of the National Institutes of Health, and currently operated by Leidos Biomedical Research.

The goal of the programme is to help support the translation of novel therapeutic interventions arising from academic, private or government entities into tomorrow’s anticancer therapeutics.

IRBM’s CEO Matteo Liguori said: “We are privileged to have been selected to participate in the CBC with the vital mission of progressing oncology programs globally, delivering transformational treatments for patients worldwide. We will be collaborating closely with the consortium’s network of scientists to help fuel the world’s discovery engine in the fight against cancer.”

A collaborative network

The CBC operates as a collaborative network of 19 Institutes with longstanding drug discovery know-how from target identification through to proof-of-concept clinical trials. Members contribute their expertise in high throughput screening, structural biology, medicinal chemistry, compound profiling, cancer cell biology, and in vivo and in vitro models for oncology.

CBC members are selected in five-year cycles and chosen for their knowledge and expertise in small molecule drug discovery and high-level capabilities to advance projects from target validation to clinical candidate selection.

IRBM’s Chief Science Officer Carlo Toniatti said: “We are thrilled and honoured to join other high calibre scientists as part of the CBC and support the praiseworthy mission of delivering novel anticancer drugs for rare and/or ‘orphan’ tumours. Our goals include significantly decreasing the time promising discoveries spend in drug development, reducing the failure rate, and overall accelerating novel targeted therapies into the clinic.”

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