On last week Finnish SPARKee Sartar Therapeutics was awarded a U.S. patent for their novel targeted therapy for gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST).
GIST is a rare intestinal soft tissue tumor and about 10 new GISTs are diagnosed annually per 1 million in most populations. About 60% of patients are treated with surgery alone and the majority of GISTs that have been treated with current drugs becomes resistant for therapies.
Sartar develops a new therapeutic option for GIST patients based on drug reformulation and repositioning of anagrelide, the drug that has been used to treat thrombocytemia, a platelet number increasing blood disease. Anagrelide will be reformulated into a slow-release drug product. Reformulation will improve pharmacokinetic properties of the candidate product to make it more efficacious, better tolerated and more convenient to use in therapy.
Sartar team consists of five professionals with background in drug development, biotech management, precision medicine, clinical oncology and molecular cancer research. Chairman of the company is Dr. Harri Sihto – Adjunct Professor of Cancer Biology (University of Helsinki).