June 17, 2020

Inside OICR’s Drug Discovery Lab: A graduate student’s unique collaborative experience

An open-science brain cancer drug development initiative makes for a memorable master’s experience

Deeba Ensan

Diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) is a complex, lethal and inoperable type of childhood brain cancer with a median survival of less than a year from diagnosis. Not only is DIPG difficult to treat, it is also extremely rare, making it a particularly challenging disease to study. Given this challenge, those studying DIPG have come together from around the world to find new solutions together.

When University of Toronto master’s student Deeba Ensan heard that OICR was contributing to DIPG research, she was eager to help. Over the last two years, Ensan has made considerable progress towards a new drug for DIPG.

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June 16, 2020

OICR joins European consortium to ‘enable and unlock biology in the open’

OICR’s Drug Discovery Program and the Structural Genomics Consortium join Europe’s new large-scale collaboration focused on generating open-access chemical tools for disease research and drug development

Richard Marcellus
Dr. Richard Marcellus, Principal Research Scientist and Group Leader in OICR’s Drug Discovery Program

Developing a new drug is a long, arduous and expensive process, requiring carefully-designed chemical compounds and the expertise to turn these compounds into medicines. In a massive international effort to accelerate this process, Europe’s Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) has recently launched a five-year, €66M, 22-partner consortium, EUbOPEN. OICR is a proud EUbOPEN partner.

Over the next five years, the consortium’s 22 participating organizations are teaming up to develop chemical probes and share those probes openly with the scientific community. Together, they will develop these chemical tool compounds for 1,000 proteins, representing a third of all druggable proteins in the human body.

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July 31, 2018

Can an open drug discovery model find a solution for rare brain cancers in children?

Dr. Aled Edwards

Dr. Aled Edwards

OICR-funded drug discovery project’s unique ‘open science’ business model is accelerating the search for a solution to lethal pediatric brain cancers

Diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) is a lethal and inoperable brain cancer with a median survival of less than a year from diagnosis. Finding solutions to this disease is challenging due to its rarity, scientific complexity and its presentation in pediatric populations. An OICR-funded team of researchers, led by Dr. Aled Edwards from M4K Pharma, have developed new potential drug candidates for DIPG that they will test in animal models in the coming months. They’ve reached this milestone ahead of schedule, with fewer resources required than anticipated, by using an ‘open drug discovery’ approach – sharing their methods and data with the greater research community to streamline the drug discovery process.

Continue reading – Can an open drug discovery model find a solution for rare brain cancers in children?