is one of the leading peptide drug discovery companies, whose libraries contain
billions of unique peptides known as Phylomer peptides; they represent a
rich source of biologically active drug leads. These peptides are known to have
exceptional structural stability, specificity and affinity, thereby giving them
the potential to address disease targets.
In a pilot
study, it was proven that certain peptides which are associated with the Omomyc
drug, kills drug-resistant and aggressive breast cancer cells. The principal
scientist is Dr. Pilar Blancafort, one of Australia's leading breast cancer
experts, associate professor at The University
of Western Australia, and a member
of the Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research. She commented that
the results of the study show that the company's Cell-Penetrating Peptide (CPP) fusion improves efficacy
of existing anticancer drugs.
Dr. Blancafort said that the study also
revealed that Phylogica's CPP fusion improved the efficacy of existing
anticancer drugs to a great extent, including the antibody, Cetuximab and the
chemotherapy agent, Docetaxel. She further stated that a combination of
Cetuximab and a Phylomer CPP-Omomyc fusion was more than three times more
effective at killing drug-resistant breast cancer cells as compared to any of
these agents alone.
"The ability to
combine drugs to treat breast cancer is particularly exciting as it has the
potential to lower the likelihood of resistance, improve drug activity and
reduce chemotherapy side-effects," she explained.
Dr. Blancafort also tested the activity of
Phylogica's CPP fusion in an in-vivo breast cancer model and found that there
was a substantial reduction in tumor size. However, she was of the opinion that
this pilot study needs to be repeated using larger groups to confirm its
Dr. Paul Watt, the Chief Scientific Officer of
Phylogica, said, "We were not
expecting such a striking result from the pilot study. We believe this is the
first time anyone has shown a CPP-Omomyc fusion protein to be active in vivo,
as to our knowledge Omomyc has only previously been successfully delivered to
tumors using a complex 'gene therapy' approach, associated with significant
regulatory hurdles to clinical application."