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Mutations of the ERBB4 Gene in Melanoma

Posted Jan 21 2010 4:00pm

Description of Invention:
Cutaneous malignant melanoma is the most common fatal skin cancer, and the incidence of this disease increases each year. The average survival time for patients diagnosed with malignant melanoma is less than ten months. Consequently, it is important to identify and understand genetic alterations leading to malignant melanoma so that new treatments strategies can be developed.

Protein tyrosine kinases (PTKs) have been associated with a wide variety of cancers, including melanoma. Using high-throughput gene sequencing, the NIH inventors have analyzed PTKs in melanoma and have identified several novel somatic alterations, including alterations in ERBB4. This invention provides methods of identifying specific inhibitors to ERBB4 that could be used to treat patients with ERBB4 mutations. Given the recent success of small molecule protein kinase inhibitors and specifically inhibitors to EGFR, this invention could be used further the development of specific inhibitors to ERBB4 and improve existing melanoma treatments for patients with these mutations.

Applications:
  • Diagnostic array for the detection of ERBB4 mutations.
  • Method of identifying ERBB4 inhibitors as therapeutic agents to treat malignant melanoma patients.


Development Status:
The technology is currently in the pre-clinical stage of development.

Inventors:
Yardena R Samuels (NHGRI)


Patent Status:
HHS, Reference No. E-272-2008/0
PCT, Application No. PCT/US2009/053005 filed 06 Aug 2009


Relevant Publication:
  1. Prickett TD, Agrawal NS, Wei X, Yates KE, Lin JC, Wunderlich JR, Cronin JC, Cruz P, Rosenberg SA, Samuels Y. Analysis of the tyrosine kinome in melanoma reveals recurrent mutations in ERBB4. Nature Genet. 2009 October;41(10):1127-1132. [ PubMed: 19718025 ]


Licensing Status:
Available for licensing.

Collaborative Research Opportunity:
The Cancer Genetics Branch, National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), National Institutes of Health (NIH) is seeking statements of capability or interest from parties interested in collaborative research to further develop, evaluate and/or commercialize an ERBB4-based diagnostic, prognostic and/or theranostic test as well as identify and/or evaluate ERBB4 inhibitor compounds for testing as possible candidate malignant melanoma therapeutic drugs. Please contact Claire Driscoll at cdriscol@mail.nih.gov or Dr. Yardena Samuels at samuelsy@mail.nih.gov for more information.


Portfolios:
Cancer
Cancer - Diagnostics



For Additional Information Please Contact:
Whitney Hastings
NIH Office of Technology Transfer
6011 Executive Blvd. Suite 325,
Rockville, MD 20852
United States
Email: hastingw@mail.nih.gov
Phone: 301-451-7337
Fax: 301-402-0220


Ref No: 2055

Updated: 01/2010

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