Novel small molecule modulators of the antioxidant response pathway: potential for therapy in cancer/inflammatory disease.

University of Aberdeen

Past award

Student: Miriam Obliers

Year Award Started: 2012

This project aims to develop a tiered screening strategy to detect the activity of novel secondary metabolites from purified extracts of marine organisms which show promise for the potential future development of new anti-cancer and/or anti-inflammatory drugs. The work will first try to identify which purified compounds show strong functional activity, but with minimum cell toxicity or induction of apoptosis, then the specific mechanisms and cell signalling pathways involved which allow these compounds to exert their functional ability. Thereafter, their pharmacological effects, in both in vitro model tumour cell systems and established inflammatory cell systems. Understanding the mechanisms of action and likely clinical effectiveness of potent, non-toxic and non-electrophilic compounds derived from natural marine-based secondary metabolites will be of huge benefit in developing lead compounds with minimum ‘off target’ effects for these two important therapeutic areas.

[*Dr Wilson took over this award, following the death of Professor Hawksworth, to whom it was made originally.]

Research area: Cancer


Dr Heather Wilson
Institute of Medical Sciences
Dr Elaina Collie-Dugoid
Institute of Medical Sciences

Smith & Nephew Plc (transferred from AquapharmBio-Discovery Ltd)