The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Advertisement
Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
A&M System’s Title IX director suspended after supporting Biden's Title IX changes
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • May 23, 2024
Advertisement
Texas A&M pitcher Evan Aschenbeck (53) throws a pitch during Texas A&M’s game against Florida at the NCAA Men’s College World Series semifinal at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Sunday, June 19, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
Aggies defeat Gators 6-0 to advance to first College World Series finals
Kolton Becker, Sports Writer • June 20, 2024

There’s always a first for everything.  For the first time in program history, Texas A&M baseball is headed to the Men’s College...

Texas A&M pitcher Ryan Prager (18) delivers a pitch during Texas A&M’s game against Kentucky at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at in Omaha, Nebraska on Monday, June 17, 2024. Prager went for 6.2 innings, allowing two hits and zero runs. (Chris Swann/The Battalion)
Sixth sense
June 18, 2024
Texas A&M outfielder Jace Laviolette (17) robs a home run from Florida infielder Cade Kurland (4) in the top of the ninth inning during Texas A&M’s game against Florida at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Sunday, June 15, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
Saves and a robbery
June 16, 2024
Advertisement
Enjoying the Destination
Enjoying the Destination
Cara Hudson, Maroon Life Writer • June 17, 2024

For the history buffs, there’s a story to why Bryan and College Station are so closely intertwined. In 1871 when the Texas Legislature approved...

Advertisement
Chris Hemsworth as Dementus in Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga.
Review: ‘Furiosa’ is a must-see
Justin ChenJune 4, 2024

My jaw dropped open in 2016. Rarely in life does that happen, but the viewing experience of “Mad Max: Fury Road" was something to behold....

$6 million grant to aid in cancer prevention research

Dr.+Peter+Davies
Photo by Courtesy
Dr. Peter Davies

With a nearly $6 million research grant from the Cancer Research and Prevention Institute of Texas (CPRIT), A&M’s Combinatorial Drug Discovery Program will be able to pour more resources into efforts to change a cancer diagnosis from a death sentence to just another medical ailment.

The Drug Discovery Program includes a cutting-edge, high-throughput processor and high-speed robotic workstations that can test up to 50,000 combinations of drugs, natural products and chemicals that could potentially lead to new cancer treatments.

Peter Davies, head of the Drug Discovery Program and director of the Center for Translational Cancer Research at the Texas A&M Health Science Center Institute for Bioscience and Technology, TAMHSC-IBT, said the research funded by the CPRIT grant, under the direction of TAMHSC-IBT in Houston’s Medical Center, will focus on repurposing drugs to develop effective cancer therapeutics.

“[The research] will focus not on discovering new drugs to treat cancer, but to use the drugs they have in combinations to form treatment therapies that are effective,” Davies said. “Roughly $1 million will go to new equipment while $5 million is to support the scientists and program for the next five years.”

Davies said this is important because it allows the training and maintenance of highly specific machines by a highly informed group of scientists.

Of the specialized equipment, Davies said integral to the research is the high-throughput IN Cell Analyzer 6000 from GE Healthcare. ‘High-throughput’ refers to the device’s ability to run tens of thousands of drug combinations in a day, Davies said.

“[Our] whole strategy is to quickly find combinations that [yield results], yet the vast majority won’t work,” Davies said.

Davies said the CPRIT grant will encourage labs, scientists, doctors and hospitals to work together through team science, a strategy based on gathering multiple scientists from many areas to tackle problems that may be too big for a single institution.

While the CPRIT grant doesn’t give Davies and his team exclusive rights to work on the research, it established Davies and TAMHSC-IBT as leaders of the program, working with scientists and materials from Baylor, MD Anderson, Rice, University of Texas Medical School, University of Houston and many other institutions.

One of those institutions is Texas A&M University’s own Health Science Center. Warren Zimmer, professor in Medical Physiology, conducts research in his lab on the physiological aspects of prostate cancer. Zimmer said Davies’ work is an important aid to his.

“[Davies] will start the experiment and get results very quickly,” Zimmer said. “My team can only select one or two chemicals and run all the variations.”

So far, these methods have yielded positive results in treating pediatric brain cancer, breast cancer, malignant melanoma and improving lung cancer’s susceptibility to radiation. Though this research shows positive results, Davies said the treatments for current cancer patients will remain the same.

 

Biochemistry and genetics senior and Dean’s Outstanding Achievement Award winner, said A&M’s research has always been strong and the grant from CPRIT shows how A&M is moving on and moving up.

“I like seeing Aggies doing good things,” Griffin said. “The university has reached such a high profile and has been earmarked as a superior research institution.”

Paul Ogden, interim executive vice president and acting chief executive officer of the A&M Health Science Center, said the Health Science Center is proud to be leading the research efforts and to have received the significant CPRIT award.
“The very special work of Dr. Davies and the team behind the Combinatorial Drug Discovery Program at the Texas A&M Health Science Center Institute of Biosciences and Technology embodies our commitment to bring together innovative scientists from across disciplines and institutions who are intent on solving society’s greatest health challenges,” Ogden said.

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Battalion

Your donation will support the student journalists of Texas A&M University - College Station. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Battalion

Comments (0)

All The Battalion Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *