The Developmental Therapeutics (DT) program leverages basic discoveries emanating from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) Massey Cancer Center (MCC) laboratories as well as the extensive translational capabilities of its members to develop and implement innovative trials designed to improve the outcomes of patients with cancer. As such, the DT program represents an important vehicle through which novel therapeutic targets and strategies are identified and developed, and by which such discoveries, including those emanating from the Cancer Biology (CB) program, are translated into the clinic for patients with cancer.
The overarching scientific objectives of the DT program are to evaluate multiple new agents and/or rational combination regimens in patients with diverse hematologic or solid tumor malignancies. In addition, DT members seek to identify biomarkers or pharmacodynamic determinants of disease responsiveness.
- Conduct transdisciplinary research to identify and develop novel compounds to probe therapeutic targets and corresponding aberrant signal transduction pathways identified by DT and other MCC program members, with the goal of validating these compounds in vivo in preparation for clinical implementation
- Investigate the mechanisms of action of and resistance to both novel and existing targeted or immunologic agents to improve their therapeutic efficacy and to circumvent tumor resistance or loss of pathway addiction through molecularly rational combination strategies
- Translate these strategies into the clinical arena in the form of both early (phase I and II) and later-stage (phase III) clinical trials