Next Article in Journal
Identification and Biological Characterization of Angiogenic and Tumor Growth Inhibitors derived from Sinica cetorhinus maximum Cartilage
Previous Article in Journal
Antifungal Activity of (+)-Curcuphenol, a Metabolite from the Marine Sponge Didiscus oxeata
Mar. Drugs 2004, 2(1), 14-29; doi:10.3390/md201014

New Marine Derived Anticancer Therapeutics ─ A Journey from the Sea to Clinical Trials

1,* , 2, 1, 3 and 4
1 PharmaMar R & D, Avda. de los Reyes 1, PI La Mina-norte, 28770-Colmenar Viejo, Madrid, Spain 2 PharmaMar R & D, Cambridge, MA, USA 3 Chemistry Dept., University of Hawaii, USA 4 School of Chemical Sciences, University of Illinois, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 12 November 2003 / Accepted: 23 January 2004 / Published: 25 February 2004
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [215 KB, uploaded 24 February 2015]   |   Browse Figures


Nature has been instrumental as a source for therapeutics. Despite the fact that we live in an oceanic planet, a number of technical factors have historically hampered the evolution of a marine-based chamanic medicine. With the implementation of scuba diving tools and the development of sophisticated instruments for the isolation and elucidation of structures of natural products from marine organisms, major advances have been made in the discovery of marine derived therapeutics. The availability of ARA-C, a nucleoside analog that is a basic component in the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia, and its fluorinated analog Gemcitabine, an important therapeutic tool in the treatment of pancreatic cancer and in non small cell lung cancer, is a solid proof and validation of the potential of this approach. As a result of our discovery and developmental program, three innovative compounds with novel mechanisms of action: ET-743, AplidinR and Kahalalide F, have been shown to display a positive therapeutic index and activity in resistant solid tumors that supports the ongoing clinical phase III/II trials. ET-743 represents the first active agent against sarcomas developed in the past 25 years and has demonstrated a therapeutic potential in pretreated ovarian cancer. Several chemical entities are under advanced preclinical testing and additional candidates for clinical development are emerging, including compounds hitting a specific target. Moreover, the development of a given marine candidate implies the collaboration of an interdisciplinary team special focused on supply, formulation, pharmacogenetics and preclinical toxicology.
Keywords: Cancer Treatment; Marine Drugs; ET-743; AplidinR; Kahalalide F Cancer Treatment; Marine Drugs; ET-743; AplidinR; Kahalalide F
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Share & Cite This Article

Further Mendeley | CiteULike
Export to BibTeX |
MDPI and ACS Style

Jimeno, J.; Faircloth, G.; Sousa-Faro, J.F.; Scheuer, P.; Rinehart, K. New Marine Derived Anticancer Therapeutics ─ A Journey from the Sea to Clinical Trials. Mar. Drugs 2004, 2, 14-29.

View more citation formats

Related Articles

Article Metrics

For more information on the journal, click here


Cited By

[Return to top]
Mar. Drugs EISSN 1660-3397 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert