Distinguished Lecture Series: Paul Hergenrother, PhD

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Wasserstrom Auditorium, L035 James
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Speaker: Dr. Paul Hergenrother
Professor and Kenneth L. Rinehart Jr. Endowed Chair in Natural Products Chemistry
University of Illinois

Title: Anticancer Drug Discovery, for Pets and People

Abstract: Only one in 20 anticancer compounds that begin human clinical trials will become an approved drug. Many have pointed at the traditional development pathway -- whereby anticancer efficacy is assessed in rodent models, and the next efficacy assessment is in people -- as a major reason for this poor success rate. We have been working to evaluate candidate compounds in pets with cancer, as a way to help these veterinary cancer patients that often have no other options and as a method to guide the selection of the human drug candidate. The lecture will describe this process through two examples, a procaspase-3 activator that has been extensively evaluated in pet dogs with cancer and is now in clinical trials in human cancer patients, and an NQO1 substrate that has been evaluated in pet cats with cancer.