PHCO 737

Target-based drug discovery and cancer treatment

One topic in cancer biology that continues to grow in importance for graduate students training in cancer research is the area of novel approaches in cancer treatment and cancer drug discovery. As the number of signal transduction target-based anticancer drugs that have entered the clinic has increased, with many more in the pipeline, it has become apparent that most trainees in basic cancer research are lacking in their understanding of many issues involving cancer treatment and drug development.

The course is offered in the spring of odd years. Topics include:

  • Conventional cancer chemotherapy
  • Target identification and validation
  • Identification of hits – high-throughput screening, rational drug design, lead identification
  • Lead compound evaluation – in vitro to cell-based assays
  • Lead compound evaluation – preclinical animal studies
  • Clinical trials ā€“ design and implementation
  • Role of academia, industry, and government
  • State of the art ā€“ what is in the pipeline?

The course is coordinated by Drs. Adrienne Cox and Channing Der. They have served as consultants for the drug discovery programs of various pharmaceutical companies, and target-based drug discovery is an essential and significant component of their research programs. Their research has been funded in part by a National Cooperative Drug Discovery Grant from the NIH.

PHCO737_VentureCapitalist2013 copy2013 Project teams: PHCO 737 students worked together to develop a drug company and product to compete for venture capitalist support. The final projects were outstanding.

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