Methods and composition for novel anti-cancer treatments



The Wnt signaling pathway plays essential roles in development and is frequently hyperactivated in cancer cells as a driving mechanism.  Nearly 90% of colon cancers, for examples are mutated in this pathway. However, direct targeting of this pathway for cancer drug discovery has been challenging due to receptor redundancy and complexity.   Leucine-rich repeat containing G-protein coupled receptors 4, 5, and 6 (LGR4-6) functions as receptors of R-spondins (RSPO) to potentiate the Wnt signaling pathway.  Recurrent gene fusions of RSPO2 and RSPO3 were found in ~10% of colorectal cancers.  Inhibition of RSPO-LGR signaling provides a novel approach to the blockade of Wnt signaling as a potential treatment of cancers with aberrant Wnt signaling.




This method could be used in the discovery of drugs targeted at the Wnt signaling pathway.  The multi-billion dollar market size of drug discovery is growing in the United States, Europe and Asia.  

Technology Highlights:

Scientists at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UT Health) have identified methods and compositions that enable the discovery of agonists and antagonists of RSPO-LGR signaling that can be used to modulate the Wnt  signaling processes. This technology has the potentials to:


·                     Determine if the activity of LGR4-6 is modulated by measuring Wnt activity in the cell.

·                     Identify a composition of a compound which may be able to bind to LGR4, LGR5 and LGR6 ligands.

IP Status:

U.S Patent application filed



“R-spondins function as ligands of the orphan receptors LGR4 and LGR5 to regulate Wnt/beta-catenin signaling.” PNAS 2011 Jul 12;108(28):11452-7.


License Available:

World-wide; exclusive or non-exclusive



Drs. Qingyun Liu, Kendra Carmon, Xing Gong



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
Qingyun (Jim) Liu
© 2024. All Rights Reserved. Powered by Inteum