BIOTECH Starpharma Holdings says it has improved a blockbuster drug that is mainly used to treat colon and colorectal cancer.
Starpharma has conducted a pre-clinical study of the effects of a dendrimer-enhanced nanoparticle version of the drug oxaliplatin on colon cancer.
The results showed that the enhanced drug was better at inhibiting tumours and reducing toxic side-effects than the non-enhanced drug.
Oxaliplatin is sold as Eloxatin by Sanofi and in 2012 generated sales of about $US2 billion (currently around $A2.16 billion).
“These positive results achieved with Starpharma’s dendrimer-enhanced oxaliplatin nanoparticles are the subject of a new patent filing and given the obvious commercial potential, Starpharma now intends to advance dendrimer-enhanced oxaliplatin formulations into development,” the company said in a statement on Wednesday.
Dendrimers are a type of synthetic nanoscale polymer that is highly regular in size and structure and suited to pharmaceutical uses.
Shares in Starpharma were 1.5 cents lower at 98.5 cents at 1253 AEST.