Felicitex Therapeutics has Designed First-In-Class Small Molecules that Inhibit DYRK Family Kinases to Selectively Disrupt Cancer Dormant Cells


Felicitex Therapeutics is an oncology drug development company in the Boston area. Our scientific platform is rooted in the biological systems that govern acquired resistance: specifically pathways that control cellular dormancy and are “hijacked” by cancer cells to enable their survival, dissemination throughout the body, and evasion of current standard-of-care therapies. Felicitex Therapeutics has designed first-in-class small molecules that inhibit DYRK family kinases to selectively disrupt cancer dormant cells in a manner that is specific to the disease and tissue context. This approach is lethal to cancer cells that rely on deregulation of the cell cycle for survival, and lead to reversal of acquired resistance mechanisms.


A challenge for durable cancer treatment is the extreme mechanistic diversity and adaptive capacity of tumors within and among cancer patients. For any given drug, the benefit is increasingly limited by the subtype of disease and by the rapid emergence of drug resistance. Our goal is to deliver broadly active and durable therapy by exploiting dormancy as cancer vulnerability within the ocean of confounding diversity. The therapeutic strategy is to use Felicitex molecules alone or in combinations with either marketed or clinical stage drugs, each combination representing a potential opportunity for partnering or licensing. The goal is to increase the patient response rate and overall survival approaching 100% and minimize the side effects by reducing the overall amount of drug required and sequential rounds of treatments. That will also reduce the overall cost of treatments. Current indications include liquid (leukemia) and solid tumors such as non-small cell lung, ovarian, and colon cancers focusing on EGFR and KRAS mutants, pancreatic and prostate cancers. Felicitex’s assets have shown a high level of synergy with a spectrum of approved oncology therapeutics, including both drugs with significant patent protection (EGFR, KRAS, MEK, PLK1 inhibitors and immune-oncology assets), and drugs with expiring patent protection, specifically the taxane family and vinca alkaloids.


Felicitex has established a drug discovery platform focused on cellular dormancy that will allow to quickly expand the pipeline via simultaneous identification of novel targets and corresponding specific small molecule inhibitors. Felicitex has a strong IP position that is continuously growing. The patent family includes two fundamental composition of matter patents, three methods of use patents, and a companion diagnostics patent.


First-in-human clinical trials are expected in Q2 2023. We are executing the development strategy rapidly and cost-effectively, drawing on a network of top-notch US-based and international collaborators, each a recognized leader in their respective areas of expertise.


Felicitex’s team of scientific and pharmaceutical development experts work with researchers at leading academic centers to advance breakthroughs to meet the unmet need for effective and feasible cancer treatments.


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