Cascade Prodrug’s technology is based on CPD100 which is a proprietary N-oxide prodrug of vinblastine, an approved cytotoxic vinca-alkaloid that is used clinically to treat several hematologic malignancies. CPD100 is stable at normal tissue O2 levels but ‘switches’ to cytotoxic vinblastine under hypoxic conditions. By creating a novel on-off switch for vinblastine, we take advantage of tumor hypoxia and trigger drug conversion in the tumor where it’s needed, thus limiting the exposure of healthy tissue to a potent cytotoxic agent. Cascade Prodrug believes that this technology will significantly increase the maximum-tolerated-dose of chemotherapy, thereby improving outcomes in patients with solid tumors.
Our studies have demonstrated that tumor cells grown in tissue culture are 25-times more susceptible to killing by CPD100 when they are incubated under hypoxic conditions.