DALLAS, Feb 15, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Joyant Pharmaceuticals Inc. ("Joyant"), a privately-held pharmaceutical company, announced the grant of an exceptional US patent covering an entire class of anti-cancer therapeutics based upon Smac mimetics. Smac mimetics represent a novel approach to targeting the apoptotic pathway and have broad potential for the treatment of cancer, both solid tumor and hematological malignancies.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) granted US Pat. No. 7,884,211 on Joyant's exclusively-licensed anticancer drug technology. "The USPTO issues broad claims like this only for truly pioneering inventions," noted Richard Aron Osman, JD, PhD, of the Science and Technology Law Group, the patent attorney responsible for prosecuting the patent application.
"Smac" is a natural protein that triggers the destruction of cancer cells. Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center serendipitously discovered that dimeric small molecule Smac mimics are extremely effective killers of cancer cells. Joyant Pharmaceuticals, the exclusive licensee of this UT Southwestern technology, is actively developing Smac mimetics as anti-cancer therapeutics.
"We are very pleased with the scope of this issued patent. It is a testament to the innovation and potential in our Smac mimetic program," said Dr. Lai Wang, Director of Research at Joyant.
"It is one of our most promising development platforms, with outstanding lead compounds."
Joyant Pharmaceuticals is a Dallas-based drug discovery company focused on the development of small molecule therapeutics for cancer. Joyant is actively translating the molecular pathways that control the growth, replication, and apoptosis of human cells into signaling-based targeted therapeutics. Joyant has the financial backing of Sanderling Ventures.
SOURCE Joyant Pharmaceuticals Inc.