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Boehringer Ingelheim, MD Anderson to advance new cancer treatments

German pharmaceutical giant Boehringer Ingelheim and The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center are joining forces to form a new virtual research and development center (R&D center) to rapidly advance new cancer treatments, covering various forms of the disease including lung and gastrointestinal cancers.

The new virtual R&D center is expected to facilitate the effective sharing of data and analysis between the partners. It will be the base for long-term collaboration on projects at various stages, including research, development and/or clinical stage.

The center will combine Boehringer Ingelheim’s pipeline of new drugs with the drug-development capabilities of MD Anderson’s Therapeutics Discovery division, which consists of a team of clinicians and researchers with various specialties, who are engaged in advancing the next generation new cancer treatments.

The TRACTION ( Translational Research to Advance Therapeutics and Innovation in Oncology) platform, a part of the Therapeutics Discovery division, carries out translational research to study how new drugs work and which will benefit the patients most.

Dr Victoria Zazulina

Dr Victoria Zazulina – Corporate Vice President and Global Head of Oncology, Medicine, at Boehringer Ingelheim. Photo courtesy of Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH.

Dr Victoria Zazulina – Boehringer Ingelheim Corporate Vice President and Global Head of Oncology, Medicine, commenting on the partnership to advance new cancer treatments, said: “We could not have chosen a better partner with all its research, translational and clinical expertise in lung and gastrointestinal cancers. Together, we hope to transform the treatment landscape for these diseases by tackling their root causes and drivers, that have so far remained elusive, exploring new and smart ways of killing cancer cells.

“Our innovative oncology pipeline coupled with strong partnerships like this will contribute to unraveling the complexities of these diseases and bringing innovative solutions to people with various types of cancers.”

Boehringer Ingelheim says that the virtual research and development center will focus on developing possible new cancer treatments that include KRAS inhibition concepts mainly for certain types of lung and gastrointestinal cancers, and also a TRAILR2 agonistic antibody designed to selectively trigger cancer cell death or apoptosis.

Commenting on the partnership to advance new cancer treatments, Tim Heffernan – executive director of TRACTION at MD Anderson said: “Within MD Anderson, we are committed to a singular goal of ending cancer. We look forward to working with Boehringer Ingelheim to advance their innovative pipeline of cancer medicines. Our Therapeutics Discovery team is well-poised to conduct impactful translational research, and this partnership will allow us to more rapidly advance much-needed new therapies to patients.”

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