The drug will be offered to cancer patients who have not responded well to standard 5-fluorouracil chemotherapy, following a collaboration deal between its inventors, NewBiotics, of San Diego, California, USA, and the biotechnology company, Elan Corporation.
NB1011 is one of a new generation of enzyme-catalyzed therapeutic activation drugs under development by NewBiotics for treating drug-resistant disease.
|NB1011 is an agonist of the resistance enzymes of cancer cells.|
The drug is an agonist of the resistance enzyme that accumulates in cancer cells.
This enables the drug to enter diseased cells, "like a Trojan Horse", according to the developers.
The resistance enzyme then catalyzes the release and activation of a toxin, which causes the cell to self-destruct.
Under the deal, Elan will be able to negotiate commercial rights to the drug in the USA, Europe and Canada.
Elan chief medical officer Dr Ivan Lieberburg said: "This agreement reflects our enthusiasm about the potential of NB1011 to become an important part of colon cancer treatment."