West Lafayette-based Akanocure Pharmaceuticals Inc. has received a $750,000 Small Business Innovation Research Phase II grant from the National Science Foundation. The startup says the funding will be used to develop chemical tools and platforms to produce chemical building blocks, which can be used to make drugs for people with hard-to-treat cancers.
The startup says the building blocks can be used for advanced research in the pharmaceutical, agrochemical and veterinary industries.
Mohammad Noshi, co-founder and principal investigator of Akanocure Pharmaceuticals, said, “We will use this award to advance our ability to develop more diverse libraries of molecules and create treatment options across multiple types of cancers.”
The platform was created by Philip Fuchs, Akanocure’s chief scientific officer and Purdue’s R. B. Wetherill Professor Emeritus of Organic Chemistry. Fuchs also holds Purdue’s highest research honor in the natural sciences, the McCoy Award.
“The support we received from the Purdue Foundry and the entire Purdue entrepreneurship community helped move this technology from the bench to commercialization at an almost unbelievable pace,” said Dr. Sherine Abdelmawla, Akanocure co-founder and chief executive officer.
Akanocure, which is located in the Purdue Research Park, received assistance from the Purdue Foundry, an entrepreneurship and commercialization hub. Akanocure’s technology is licensed through the Purdue Research Foundation Office of Technology Commercialization.