Salivary Peptide Derived Biologic for Treatment of Breast Cancer




Carcinoma of the breast is the second most common type of cancer among women and despite improved early detection, diagnosis and aggressive treatment approaches, consisting of surgery, radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy, carcinoma of the breast is still a great threat to human life. Currently, there is an incomplete knowledge of the molecular principles underlying the malignant progression as well as the development and maintenance of local recurrence and distant metastasis of this cancer type. There is also additional problems in rendering treatment of triple negative breast carcinomas, which are more aggressive than other types of breast cancer and respond poorly to treatments such as hormonal and Her2/neu receptor therapy.


Current research suggests that carcinoma of the breast may alter the protein profile of secretions produced by other exocrine tissues such as the lacrimal and salivary glands. One salivary protein that has been repeatedly found up-regulated among salivary proteomic analysis is the submaxillary gland androgen-regulated protein 3B (SMR3B; P02814). The SMR3B is an 8.188 kilodalton protein that belongs to the gene family whose other members are SMR3A and PROL1, which all produce opiorphin homologs,  small peptides derived by post-translational processing from their parent proteins. Opiorphins have been identified as a novel class of peptides that act as potent endogenous membrane metalloendopeptidase inhibitors, which may aid in the reduction of tumor motility and reduction of tumor growth.


Technology Overview:

Researchers at UTHealth have demonstrated in pre-clinical studies that use of SMR3B derived proline rich peptides, such as p1978, showed an anti-tumor effect in vitro. Studies showed that HCC38 cell line (triple negative breast cancer cell line) showed decreased growth when exposed to the low and high dose of the p1978 protein. These results suggest that p1978 may have potential in treating triple receptor negative breast cancer.





Intellectual Property Status:

•       U.S. Patent application 16/452,178 pending

•       Available for licensing, exclusive or non-exclusive

Patent Information:

The preceding is intended to be a non-confidential and limited description of a novel technology created at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth). This promotional material is not comprehensive in scope and should not replace company’s diligence in a thorough evaluation of the technology. Please contact the Office of Technology Management for more information regarding this technology.
For Information, Contact:
Christine Weaver
Director, Licensing and New Venture Development
University of Texas Health Science Center At Houston
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