Institution - University of Bath
Researcher - Professor Mike Threadgill
Grant award - £101,992
Duration - 2009-2012
Reference - S13-008
This study aims to refine a molecular drug-delivery system that targets treatment directly to prostate cancer cells. This could lead to a new approach to chemotherapy where the drug is delivered directly to prostate cancer cells, thereby increasing the effect of the treatment whilst also minimising the potential side effects.
Treatments for advanced prostate cancer can often cause debilitating side effects, as they unselectively kill normal cells as well as cancerous cells. This study proposes a new approach that could selectively target the treatment directly to prostate cancer cells, thereby reducing the impact on normal healthy cells. This could greatly improve the effectiveness of chemotherapy in treating advanced prostate cancer, whilst also radically improving the quality of life of the men receiving treatment by minimising the side effects of the treatment.
After the first year, the team has made significant steps in the production of the pro-drug and optimizing its activity and potency against prostate cancer cells. The next step is to attach the most promising iterations of the pro-drug to a carrier protein, which will deliver the drug directly to the cancer cells. They will then test this whole pro-drug system to see whether the drug is being released at the tumour sites and whether it is able to selectively kill the prostate cancer cells.