January 05, 2019 | News
05 January 2019, London, UK
FabRx’s co-founders, Professor Abdul Basit and Professor Simon Gaisford, have successfully been awarded an Interdisciplinary Research Collaboration (IRC) grant by EPSRC worth over £10 million to improve therapies of hard-to-treat cancers. The collaboration, led by Cambridge University and involving University College London (UCL), Imperial, Birmingham and Glasgow Universities aims to develop an array of new technologies to improve survival rates for hard-to-treat cancers.
Professor George Malliaras, who leads the IRC, said “Some cancers are difficult to remove by surgery and highly invasive, and they are also hard to treat because drugs often cannot reach them at high enough concentration”. In particular, he said, “Pancreatic tumour cells are protected by dense stromal tissue, and tumours of the central nervous system by the blood-brain barrier”. The team hopes to assess and develop a range of new technologies to deliver drugs in high enough concentrations to kill cancer cells. Cancer scientists and clinicians from the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Centre and partner sites will carry out clinical trials. The UCL team will focus on manufacturing technologies to ensure the novel devices are able to be manufactured and robust enough to withstand surgical manipulation.
Prof Gaisford said “Our expertise and world-leading experience in designing and manufacturing pharmaceutical products with 3D printing means we are ideally equipped to scale-up and manufacture the exciting drug delivery technologies that will be developed by our project partners”. Prof Basit said “We are very excited to be able to work on such an innovative and exciting project and we look forward to taking 3D printed medicines into the clinic to improve patient outcomes”.
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