Industry: Adjuvant treatment for cancer therapy
ApoCan is an early-stage drug-development company investigating the applications of Verticillin A as a supporting therapy in ongoing cancer treatment.
Verticillin A is a natural compound derived from poisonous mushrooms. Recent discoveries have shown that Verticillin A can overcome cancer cells’ resistance to TRAIL, a protein that induces cell death, particularly in tumor cells.
Based on that finding, Augusta University researchers are investigating the use of Verticillin A to sensitize drug-resistant metastatic colon cancer cells to TRAIL-based chemotherapeutic agents. If successful, the compound could be translated into a long-term treatment to stop cancer from returning, a kind of treatment known as adjuvant therapy.
Drug resistance and metastasis cause 90 percent of cancer deaths, creating an urgent need for adjuvant agents that increase cancer cells’ sensitivity to drugs.