Sanofi and the Curie Institute, through its Curie-Cancer partnership, have announced the establishment of a three-year research collaboration to identify new therapeutic targets for the development of ovarian cancer treatments.
The aim of the collaboration is for Sanofi and Curie-Cancer to revisit the basic biology of ovarian cancer to gain a better understanding of the molecular alterations that characterize the different types. This will enable effective new drugs to be designed in the future.
The Institut Curie has developed technology platforms to sequence molecules expressed by the tumour genome and compare the sequences of those obtained with non-tumor tissues from the same patients and then clarify and validate the nature of the molecular alterations that are identified. Sanofi's expertise in the selection of therapeutic targets will then guide an assessment of the tumor's ability to be inhibited or stimulated by drugs.
"We hope this type of long-term collaboration will ultimately open up perspectives for new therapeutic options for women with this disease. It will combine the accumulated knowledge on ovarian cancer gathered over many years by oncologists and biologists at the Institut Curie with the expertise of researchers from Sanofi's research and product development teams. Established under the Aviesan partnership, this research agreement is a good example of translational research involving French scientific excellence."
Dr. Debasish Roychowdhury, senior vice president and head of Sanofi Oncology.
"It is currently hard to tackle ovarian cancer. There are very few drugs available. We are very happy to collaborate with Sanofi to potentially provide our patients with additional therapeutic solutions. Sanofi's expertise in the selection of therapeutic targets is complementary to the know-how and technology platforms developed at the Institut Curie."
Damien Salauze, director of Curie-Cancer.
Despite recent advances, ovarian cancer is still difficult to treat. Approximately 250,000 women worldwide are diagnosed with this form of cancer each year.
Amgen recently reported that its ovarian cancer drug trebananib met its primary endpoint of progression-free survival (PFS) in phase 3 clinical trials, while Eisai is determining a new development strategy following poor results of its phase 3 ovarian cancer trials evaluating farletuzumab (MORAb-003).
Sanofi and Curie-Cancer agree ovarian cancer alliance (Zenopa)
Sanofi press release