Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers Develop Novel Method for Treatment of Sickle Cell Disease

09.11.2006
Virginia Commonwealth University researchers have developed a unique anti-sickling agent that may one day be effective in treating sickle cell disease, a painful and debilitating genetic blood disorder that affects approximately 80,000 Americans.

The research team led by Donald Abraham, Ph.D., the Alfred and Frances Burger Professor of Biological and Medicinal Chemistry, in the Department of Medicinal Chemistry in VCU's School of Pharmacy, has shown that 5-HMF, a pure compound developed by the team, has a high affinity for sickle cell hemoglobin and holds promise for the treatment of sickle cell disease.

"Our findings suggest that this anti-sickling agent may lead to new drug treatments and may one day help those suffering with sickle cell disease. This molecule, 5-HMF, is the most promising molecule to treat sickle cell anemia to come from our research group in more than 30 years," said Abraham, who is also the director of the Institute of Structural Biology and Drug Discovery.

The United States Patent and Trademark Office recently issued VCU a Notice of Allowance for a patent relating to a method of treating sickle cell disease with 5-HMF compound. A Notice of Allowance is a written notification that a patent application has cleared an internal review and it has been approved for issuance.

Sickle cell disease is caused by an abnormality in the hemoglobin molecule. Normal red blood cells carrying hemoglobin are smooth, round and flexible and can travel easily throughout blood vessels. However, sickle cells are stiff, abnormally shaped, red blood cells that do not flow freely through blood vessels. The sickle cells also may clot together causing a blockage to form which results in pain and potentially dangerous complications that can compromise a patient's organs.

According to Abraham, the 5-membered, heterocyclic, anti-sickling agent binds to hemoglobin to increase the oxygen affinity of both normal and sickle hemoglobin. In a patient with sickle cell disease, the binding action of 5-HMF would allow sickle cells to move more smoothly throughout the blood vessels of the body and prevent blockages from forming.

Abraham is internationally known for his groundbreaking work discovering and developing drugs that interact with hemoglobin. His research focus is to develop targeted therapeutics in sickle cell anemia, cardiovascular disease, stroke, cancer, Alzheimer's disease and radiation oncology.

This research was supported in part by a grant from the National Institutes of Health.

Xechem International, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company headquartered in New Brunswick, N.J., has entered into a licensing agreement with VCU Technology Transfer and has the exclusive worldwide rights for the production, sales and marketing of 5-HMF for use to fight sickle cell disease.

A recent grant from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health, awarded to Xechem International Inc., will allow researchers to carry out toxicity studies on 5-HMF. The research team will include researchers from VCU and Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, University of Philadelphia.

Working with Abraham to develop the anti-sickling agent were: Martin K. Safo, Ph.D., Richmond Danso-Danquah, Ph.D., and Gajanan S. Joshi, Ph.D., all researchers in the VCU Department of Medicinal Chemistry.

About Xechem: Xechem International is a development stage biopharmaceutical company working on Sickle Cell Disease (SCD), antimalarials, and antiviral (including AIDS), anticancer, antifungal and antibacterial products from natural sources, including microbial and marine organisms. Its focus is on the development of phyto-pharmaceuticals (Natural Herbal Drugs) and other proprietary technologies, including those used in the treatment of orphan diseases. Xechem’s mission is to bring relief to the millions of people who suffer from these diseases. Its recent focus and resources have been directed primarily toward the development and launch of NICOSAN™ (named HEMOXIN™ in the US and Europe) for the prophylactic management of Sickle Cell Disease (SCD). With the recent Nigerian regulatory approval of NICOSAN™, Xechem is now scaling-up the commercialization of the drug in Nigeria and making preparations for the pursuit of US FDA and European regulatory approval.

About VCU and the VCU Medical Center:

Virginia Commonwealth University is the largest university in Virginia and ranks among the top 100 universities in the country in sponsored research. Located on two downtown campuses in Richmond, VCU enrolls more than 30,000 students in nearly 200 certificate and degree programs in the arts, sciences and humanities. Sixty-three of the programs are unique in Virginia, many of them crossing the disciplines of VCU’s 15 schools and one college. MCV Hospitals and the health sciences schools of Virginia Commonwealth University compose the VCU Medical Center, one of the nation’s leading academic medical centers.

Sathya Achia-Abraham | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.vcu.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht NTU scientists build new ultrasound device using 3-D printing technology
07.12.2016 | Nanyang Technological University

nachricht How to turn white fat brown
07.12.2016 | University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

NTU scientists build new ultrasound device using 3-D printing technology

07.12.2016 | Health and Medicine

The balancing act: An enzyme that links endocytosis to membrane recycling

07.12.2016 | Life Sciences

How to turn white fat brown

07.12.2016 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>