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SU2C Canada–Canadian Cancer Society Breast Cancer Dream Team: Translational Development of Novel Drugs Targeting Tumor Vulnerabilities

Team Leaders

  • Tak W. Mak, PhD
    Tak W. Mak, PhD
    Campbell Family Institute for Breast Cancer Research, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre
    Team Leader
    Full Bio
  • Samuel Aparicio, PhD
    Samuel Aparicio, PhD
    University of British Columbia
    Co-leader
    Full Bio

Overview:

The SU2C Canada–Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) Breast Cancer Dream Team has accelerated the research and development of three new drugs intended to treat aggressive forms of breast cancer. The Dream Team’s approach, called targeted therapy, has been to identify and make use of characteristics in the cancer cells that distinguish them from normal body cells.

Breast cancer remains the second-leading cause of cancer death in women in Canada and the United States. For triple-negative breast cancer and other aggressive forms of the disease, treatment options have been limited. The Dream Team seeks to expand the range of options by accelerating the development of three new drugs.

The first drug, called CFI-400945, inhibits an enzyme that drives division and proliferation of cancer cells. The second, CFI-402257, inhibits a molecule that also seems to drive the cancer process. The third, CX5461, works by binding to the replicating DNA and stopping the cell’s copying machinery in its tracks.

The team is also using state-of-the-art approaches to help determine how the three drugs can be used most effectively against breast cancer. All three are in early-stage clinical trials to pave the way to larger trials. This team was originally launched as the SU2C Canada–Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation Breast Cancer Dream Team.

Scientific Abstract (PDF)
Team Progress Updates (PDF)

Team Roster

Tak W. Mak, PhD
Campbell Family Institute for Breast Cancer Research, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre
Team Leader

Samuel Aparicio, PhD
University of British Columbia
Co-leader

Karen Gelmon, MD
British Columbia Cancer Agency
Principal Investigator

Morag Park, PhD
Rosalind and Morris Goodman Cancer Centre
Principal Investigator

Kathleen Pritchard, MD
Odette Cancer Centre
Principal Investigator

Wendie den Brok, MD
University of British Columbia
Advocate

Randy Mellon
Toronto
Advocate

Zuri Scrivens
Vancouver
Advocate

Thorsten Berger, PhD
University Health Network
Project Manager


Publications
A Targetable EGFR-Dependent Tumor-Initiating Program in Breast Cancer
Savage P, Park M, et al. (2017)
Cell Reports 21, 1140–1149.

CX-5461 is a DNA G-quadruplex Stabilizer with Selective Lethality in BRCA1/2 Deficient Tumours
Xu H, Mak TW, Aparicio S, et al. (2017)
Nature Communications 8:1432.