Basic Cancer Research | SRI International
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Basic Cancer Research

SRI Biosciences is a leading provider of preclinical development services for oncology treatments. SRI's Center for Cancer and Metabolism partners with government agencies and pharmaceutical companies to

  • Identify molecular targets

  • Discover new drug candidates

  • Develop models for evaluating the efficacy of drugs

  • Elucidate drug mechanisms of action

  • Optimize promising drug candidates

  • Develop cost-effective strategies for synthesis

For the National Cancer Institute (NCI)—a client for more than 50 years—SRI provides preclinical cancer research, which includes evaluating the preclinical safety and pharmacokinetics of chemotherapeutics and chemopreventive agents. SRI also provides genetic toxicology testing for NCI's chemoprevention program, synthesizes compounds for NCI's carcinogen repository, and manufactures clinical trial materials.

SRI also operates one of seven National Cancer Institute (NCI) funded Tumor Glycome Laboratories. These laboratories are the principal component of the trans-NIH Alliance of Glycobiologists for Detection of Cancer and Cancer Risk, which is searching for glycan-based biomarkers for breast, ovarian, lung, prostate, and pancreatic cancers and melanoma. Learn more about SRI's Tumor Glycome Laboratory.

More than 30 years of research has led to numerous SRI drugs on the market or ready for licensing, including:

  • Targretin® (bexarotene), a retinoid receptor ligand marketed by Eisai

  • Tirapazamine, a hypoxic tissue-selective cytotoxin

  • TAS-108, a selective estrogen receptor modulator licensed to Taiho Pharmaceutical

  • PDX (pralatrexate), an antimetabolite licensed to Allos Therapeutics

  • SR16157, a dual estrone sulfatase / ER antagonist for breast cancer treatment

Learn more about SRI's research and services in these areas:


Using Synthetic Lethality to Identify Predictive Biomarkers of Targeted Therapies

Using synthetic lethality to ID biomarkers for targeted anti-cancer drugs.

The Integrin αvβ6 Increases During the Pathogenesis of Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Lung

Identification of Cell-Specific Biomarkers

SRI’s Brown Laboratory is using selected peptides as “fishing hooks” to identify novel cell surface features.

A peptide that targets dendritic cells delivers quantum dots intracellularly.

Targeted Immunotherapies for Cancer

SRI's Brown Laboratory is taking multiple approaches to develop effective anti-cancer immunotherapies.

Delivering Therapeutics to Intracellular Targets

SRI’s Brown Laboratory is utilizing cell-targeting peptides to deliver active therapeutic cargo to specific cells in vivo.