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Development of a Novel Vector for Cancer Gene Therapy for Clinical Application

Objective

Background: The applicant has generated a body of research work in the field of gene therapy for cancer. Our recent research has shown that oral administration of Bifidobacteria to mice results in translocation from the Gastro-Intestinal Tract (GIT) with subsequent homing to and replication specifically in tumours, providing high-level gene expression confined to tumours. These findings indicate potential for treatment and/or detection of cancer via ingestion of non-pathogenic bacteria. We have filed patents protecting this technology. Project Aim To further improve this technology and validate its potential for clinical use. Rationale Further skill sets are required to progress this research. These involve availing of state-of-the art expertise in cancer gene therapy and diagnostic techniques, as well as experience in advancing preclinical research to clinical trial. The US has 996 active gene therapy clinical trials featuring a range of vectors including bacteria. There are no active cancer gene therapy clinical trials in Europe using bacteria, while Ireland has yet to bring any gene therapy to trial. Lack of activity locally constrains the logical progression of the research of the applicant and his institution. Prof. Noriyuki Kasahara’s laboratory (proposed outgoing host) at the David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California Los Angeles is internationally renowned for cancer gene therapy research and is part of the Digestive Diseases Research Center, which specialises in GIT biology. UCLA also hosts the Crump Institute for Molecular Imaging, making this host uniquely suited to the proposed research in developing a gastrointestinal bacterial vector for cancer gene therapy and/or diagnosis. These centres are within a clinical facility with active clinical trials, in a biotechnology industry rich region. This fellowship will strengthen Europe’s collaborative links with world-leading groups, and equip the applicant with skills for his future research.
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Coordinator

UNIVERSITY COLLEGE CORK - NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF IRELAND, CORK

Address

Western Road
T12 Yn60 Cork

Ireland

Activity type

Higher or Secondary Education Establishments

EU Contribution

€ 283 465,50

Administrative Contact

Collins Miriam (Ms.)

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 255466

Status

Closed project

  • Start date

    1 May 2010

  • End date

    31 October 2012

Funded under:

FP7-PEOPLE

  • Overall budget:

    € 283 465,50

  • EU contribution

    € 283 465,50

Coordinated by:

UNIVERSITY COLLEGE CORK - NATIONAL UNIVERSITY OF IRELAND, CORK

Ireland