Professor Benoit receives Drug Development Award from UR Ventures

May 8, 2018

Professor Danielle Benoit, along with Profs. Rudi Fasan and Ben Frisch, received a Drug Development Award from UR Ventures for their project entitled, "Synergistic agents to normalize the marrow niche and potentiate AML cytotoxic agents.” The goal of this drug discovery lead study application is to perform pharmacokinetics/biodistribution and preliminary efficacy studies for a new AML drug therapy involving one repurposed FDA approved drug (Maraviroc, to prime the microenvironment for cytotoxic agents, identified as a potential AML-acting drug by Prof. Frisch) and a new selective antileukemic drug entity (micheliolide-64, a cytotoxic agent developed by Prof. Fasan). Data will provide initial assessments of the therapeutic potential of a new, synergistic treatment based on bone marrow-directed delivery of marrow priming agents and AML cell-targeting cytotoxic agents. As these drugs suffer from significant delivery barriers hindering efficacy they are loaded into a targeted drug delivery system developed by Prof. Benoit. Critical towards these studies is the bone marrow microenvironment and AML therapy development expertise of Prof. Frisch.