Camarero Awarded $375K Melanoma Research Grant

Funding from the Melanoma Research Alliance will support a study of the therapeutic targeting of a novel type of cyclotide-based inhibitor in melanoma

Julio A. Camarero, John A. Biles Professor in Pharmaceutical Sciences at the USC Mann School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, was recently awarded a three-year $375,000 grant from the Melanoma Research Alliance (MRA) for the project “Therapeutic Targeting of Hdm2/HdmX E3 Ligase in Melanoma.”

The MRA Established Investigator Award is intended to support pre-clinical, translational, and early clinical research with the potential to produce unusually high-impact, near-term advancements in melanoma prevention, detection, diagnosis, and treatment, according to the Melanoma Research Alliance.

Camarero’s lab has discovered a novel cyclotide and is working on strategies to improve the cellular uptake and pharmacokinetic profiles of bioactive cyclotides. The project aims to investigate the efficacy of cyclotides on several types of melanomas.

“We anticipate that this novel type of cyclotide-based inhibitor will have a broad spectrum of antitumor activity in human melanoma tumor cells both in vitro and in vivo, thus providing a novel basis for the future therapy of this type of cancer,” Camarero said.