Cancer diseases are critical medical problems - according to the International Agency for Research on Cancer and European Commission estimates, globally there were more than 18 million new cases and 9.5 million cancer-related deaths in 2018, what indicates that tumors are among the leading causes of death, worldwide.
Traditional anticancer drug design based on small molecules continues to be a powerful strategy for the development of novel chemotherapeutics. However, these anticancer therapies are facing major problems such as drug resistance, especially in advanced cancers. This is mainly due to the alterations in the target, ineffective apoptosis or activation of different pathways, among others. The use of PROteolysis-TArgeting Chimerics (PROTACs) has become a promising approach to overcome resistance since they act degrading instead of inhibiting the target, with the advantage of reducing the systemic drug exposure and to counteract the protein expression that often accompanies inhibition of protein function. This approach uses bivalent molecules that possess a target protein recruiting group linked to an E3 ligase interacting moiety for protein degradation.
The main goal of this project is to design, synthesize and evaluate a series of new small-molecule PROTACs, which will be able to degrade enzymes and receptors that are responsible for tumor development and progression. To address this aim, I shall carry out a fellowship at Universidad San Pablo CEU under the supervision of Prof. Beatriz de Pascual-Teresa and Irene Ortín from Faculty of Pharmacy. As part of this research, I shall carry out a secondment in the Department of Molecular Biotechnology and Health Sciences at University of Turin (Italy), and another one at the company CsFlowChem S.L. It is worth noting that the design and synthesis of new PROTACs will be based on our wide experience in the development of compounds responsible for inhibition or regulation of the selected target proteins.
Fields of science
- medical and health scienceshealth sciences
- medical and health sciencesbasic medicinemedicinal chemistry
- natural sciencesbiological sciencesbiochemistrybiomoleculesproteins
- medical and health sciencesbasic medicinepharmacology and pharmacydrug resistance
- medical and health sciencesclinical medicinecancer
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