A New Generation of Tubulin Inhibitors

Wei Li of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center demonstrates promising research on tubulin inhibitors for metastatic cancer.

June 06, 2023 /

Wei Wang, Ph.D.

 capsule fights cancer cell

On May 25, the University of Houston Drug Discovery Institute hosted Wei Li, Ph.D. for a hybrid seminar entitled: "The Discovery of a New Generation of Tubulin Inhibitors for Metastatic Cancer.” 

Li, Distinguished Professor at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC), the Director of the UTHSC College of Pharmacy (UTCoP) Drug Discovery Center, and the Faculty Director of the Shared Analytical Instrument Facility at UTCoP, provided a comprehensive overview of groundbreaking research on orally bioavailable tubulin inhibitors. This research has demonstrated exceptional efficacy in combating cancer and shows great promise in overcoming drug resistance mechanisms.

Li's work represents a significant advancement in the field of cancer treatment, specifically in addressing the limitations associated with widely used tubulin inhibitors such as paclitaxel. By specifically targeting the colchicine binding site, these novel inhibitors exhibit a broad spectrum of potent anticancer activity. Notably, the investigational new drug Sabizabulin, derived from Li's research, has progressed to multiple clinical trials for cancer treatment. In addition, it recently also completed a Phase 3 trial for hospitalized COVID-19 patients. 

Moreover, Li shared valuable insights into the ongoing project in his lab, which focuses on the discovery of selective TRPC3 inhibitors for the treatment of neurological diseases, particularly epilepsy. This ongoing research endeavors to identify compounds that can effectively modulate TRPC3 channels and hold the potential to address unmet medical needs in the field of neurological diseases.

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