PARK CITY, Utah, Feb. 6 NuView Radiopharmaceuticals, Inc.(NuView) has executed an agreement with Thomas Jefferson University(Jefferson) for the exclusive distribution and commercialization rights for atumor-specific imaging agent that assists in the diagnosis of breast andprostate tumors. NuView also intends to sponsor research at Jefferson tofurther develop the technology.
Among U.S. men, prostate cancer (PC) accounts for 29% of all newlydiagnosed cancers. Among U.S. women, breast cancer (BC) accounts for 27% ofall newly diagnosed cancers. A reliable scintigraphic agent to image PC & BCand its metastatic or recurrent lesions and to determine the effectiveness ofits treatment will contribute to the management of these diseases. All humantumors over-express vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP) and pituitaryadenylate cyclase-activating peptide (PACAP) receptors known as VPAC1, VPAC2and PAC1. In vitro/in vivo evaluations are currently under way for specificpeptide analogues for PET imaging of these cancers.
Matthew Thakur, M.D., Director of Radiopharmaceutical Research andProfessor of Radiology and Radiation Oncology at Jefferson Medical College ofThomas Jefferson University and past President of the Society of NuclearMedicine, has demonstrated the clinical potential for radiopharmaceuticalimaging of breast, prostate, and lung cancers. Dr. Thakur and his team havebeen studying the binding of the small molecule peptide PACAP to vasoactivepituitary adenylate cyclase (VPAC) receptors expressed in high density ontumors.
"The need for clinically-useful, non-invasive molecular imaging techniquesspecific to breast and prostrate tumors is very great. Molecular imaging ofthese types of tumors could improve early diagnosis, staging, and monitoringof therapy in patients," says Dr. Thakur. Having tested radiolabeled PACAP asa non-invasive imaging agent in several clinical scenarios, particularly inearly detection of breast tumors, Dr. Thakur's team is looking forward toexpanding the Jefferson studies in prostate tumor imaging as well as fortherapeutic applications. Peter Conti, M.D., NuView Medical Director said,"In addition to its diagnostic potential, binding of a therapeutic isotope tothis agent could lead to a novel targeted radiotherapeutic drug to treatbreast and prostate tumors. We are looking forward to exploring bothopportunities with the Jefferson investigators."
Further studies of testing imaging techniques are also underway withpatients at the Moores Cancer Center at University of California, San DiegoMedical Center. "If the Jefferson technology works as well as we hope, itwill usher in a whole new generation of diagnostic PET tracers for imagingbreast and prostate carcinoma using PET-CT or PET-MR in the future. Theimproved sensitivity and specificity of these new agents should lead to bettertreatment and improved patient outcome," said William G. Bradley, Jr., MD,PhD, F.A.C.R., and Chair of Radiology at UCSD.
Thomas Jefferson University, an academic health center, was founded asJefferson Medical College in 1824. Thomas Jefferson University is composed ofJefferson Medical College, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, the Collegeof Graduate Studies, and the College of Allied Health Sciences and iscommitted to educating healthcare and research professionals in a variety ofdisciplines, discovering new knowledge through translational investigationsfrom the laboratory to the bedside and into the community. Today, thisacademic health center tests and treats 25,000 inpatients and more than300,000 outpatients every year, and enrolls 2,600 future health careprofessionals. Thomas Jefferson University Public and private funding ofJefferson research exceeds $64 million annually. Since its founding,Jefferson Medical College has awarded more than 26,000 medical degrees and hasmore living graduates than any other medical school i