Available Technologies

No technologies match these criteria.
Schedule UC TechAlerts to receive an email when technologies are published that match this search. Click on the Save Search link above

Find technologies available for licensing from UC San Diego.

Novel Cyclic Dinucleotide Analogues as STING Agonists

Stimulator of interferon genes (STING) is known to be a central mediator of innate immunity. It is a 379 amino acid protein expressed in various endothelial and epithelial cell types as well as in hematopoietic cells such as T cells, macrophages and dendritic cells. STING is naturally activated by aberrant DNA species via formation of native cyclic dinulcleotides (CDNs) in cytosol of the cell. When stimulated STING induces the expression of type I interferon (IFN), cytokines and T cell recruitment factors that result in the activation of macrophages and dendritic cells, innate effector cells such as natural killer (NK) cells and priming of tumor specific T cells. Recent studies have shown that the STING pathway is essential for radiation induced and spontaneous natural antitumor T cell responses. Tumor cells often induce an immunosuppressive microenvironment favoring cancer development. Targeting STING pathway by using TING agonists to produce IFNs for enhancing antitumor immune response may provide an alternative strategy for the improvement of cancer immunotherapy.

Targeting Unique Copy Number Vulnerabilities In Tumor Cells

In the last ten years much progress has been achieved on the genome analysis of cancer causing genes, mainly driven by the advances of whole genome sequencing and the identification of driver mutations. The detection of thousands of mutations in single samples as well as in large cohorts led by The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA), the Cancer Genome Project (CGP), and the International Cancer Genome Consortium have driven these advances. As of 2018, data from these projects and current literature has generated a list of 522 cancer genes in the Catalogue of Somatic Mutations in Cancer (COSMIC). The increasing application of precision medicine for individual cancers has increased the focus of identifying additional and rare drivers of mutations. To that end, some focus has been on the identification of oncogene amplification on extrachromosomal DNA.

Combination Immunotherapies for Treatment of Liver Cancer

Primary liver cancer, with the majority being hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), is now the second leading cause of cancer mortality and the fifth most common cancer worldwide, claiming approximately 800,000 life every year. HCC is a chemotherapy resistant tumor with limited treatment options including surgical resection, liver transplantation and local ablation at the early stages. Sorafenib, a multi-kinase inhibitor, remains a first-line systemic drug for advanced HCC even with poor outcomes, and similar low therapeutic benefits were reported for regorafenib, lenvatinib, and cabozantinib. Over 100 clinical trials that tested other compounds or approaches have failed to show therapeutic benefit to HCC patients. Immunotherapy by blocking inhibitory pathways in T lymphocytes, such as the PD-L1/PD-1 axis, is being widely tested in various solid tumors. Notably, this emerging therapeutic approach is already in clinical trials for advanced HCC in multi-centers around the globe. Two latest reports on open-label, non-randomized, phase 1/2 trials with pembrolizumab or nivolumab indicated manageable safety in advanced HCC patients with or without prior sorafenib treatment, albeit with very limited therapeutic benefits observed so far. The outcome of immunotherapy for liver cancer can be compounded by the unique immunotolerant microenvironment in the liver. A variety of clinical trials are ongoing to evaluate combination of immune checkpoint inhibitors or with other drugs, without clear justification or support by preclinical data.

Treatment of Myocardial Infarction and Conditions of Oxidative Stress with Cysteamine

Adipose tissue is an important source of metabolically active secretory products, including fat cell hormones adiponectin and leptin. Adiponectin is a factor secreted by fat cells which reduces vascular inflammation, promotes insulin-sensitivity and cell longevity. Adiponectin levels are reduced in obesity, insulin-resistance and type 2 diabetes, myocardial infarction and other conditions associated with ischemia such as stroke. Low levels of adiponectin are associated with metabolic disease and are strongly predictive of diabetes. Potentially, adiponectin could be used as a therapeutic agent, but it is not available, therefore, another therapeutic agent is needed that could potentially modulate levels of adiponectin.

Collimator/Image Reconstruction Molecular Breast Imaging

MBI and BSGI utilize γ-cameras in a mammographic configuration to provide functional images of the breast. Several studies have confirmed that MBI has a high sensitivity for the detection of small breast lesions, independent of tumor type. A large clinical trial compared MBI with screening mammography in over 1000 women with mammographically dense breast tissue and increased risk of breast cancer and showed that MBI detected two to three times more cancers than mammography. Despite these favorable results, BSGI and MBI have not been widely accepted for breast cancer screening due to greater effective radiation dose compared with mammography. Another disadvantage of MBI is long imaging time, causing discomfort to the patient. Furthermore, while digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT) produces 3D images, resulting in improved cancer detection over mammography, current clinical MBI and BSGI systems produce only 2D images. These disadvantages are due to the use of parallel hole collimator (PHC) with MBI and BSGI, which is inefficient, allowing only gamma rays traveling perpendicular to the detector to be recorded. Furthermore, PHA cannot produce a 3D image with a stationary detector and results in a loss of image resolution with increasing distance between the tumor and the gamma detector.

Novel Network-Resetting Therapeutics for Inflammatory Bowel Disease and Associated Chronic Diseases

The gut barrier is comprised of a single layer of epithelial cells that serve as a physical barrier against multiple stressors, e.g., microbes, microbial products, and antigens. Although it is widely accepted that an impaired gut barrier contributes to the initiation and progression of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), to date there is no biomarker or therapeutic target to detect/heal the barrier. IBD is of multifactorial origin -- luminal dysbiosis, immune deregulation, genetics, and environmental factors all contribute to its development and progression. Currently, IBD patients are offered expensive inflammation-reducing therapies have only a ~30-50% response-rate; 40% of responders become refractory to treatment within a year. Unfortunately, 100% face the risk of morbid side effects. Therefore, there is an urgent need to develop alternative modalities, in this case, ways to strengthen the gut barrier and heal broken junctions.

Ultrashort Echo Time Magnetization Transfer (UTE-MT) Imaging as a Tool to Aid in the Diagnosis of Osteoporosis

Routine clinical evaluation of osteoporosis (OP) has been focused on dual energy X-ray absorptiometry(DEXA) and/or computed tomography (CT), which provides qualitative analysis of bone mineral (~45% of bone by volume). The majority of bone which is the organic matrix and water (~55% of bone by volume) plays an important role in bone viscosity and strength. Bone mineral density (BMD) by itself only predicts fractures with an accuracy of 30-50%. The overall fracture risk increases 13-fold from ages 60 to 80, but BMD alone only predicts a doubling of the fracture risk. A recent study of over 7806 patients found that only 44% of all non-vertebral fractures occurred in women with a T-score below -2.5 (WHO definition of OP). This percentage dropped to 21% in men. There is a clear need for more sensitive risk assessment tools which not only use BMD, but other determinants of risk such as bone microstructure, porosity, organic matrix and bone water. The organic matrix and water are undetectable with any of the current non-invasive imaging and/or quantification techniques. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) detects signals from water in tissues, thus potential for detecting the collagen matrix (bound water) and bone porosity (bulk water). However, bone water has very short transverse relaxation time (T2*) and is undetectable using conventional MR sequences on clinical MR systems.

Development of an Antidote for Cyanide and Sulfide Poisoning

Cyanide is a rapidly acting poison, which, along with carbon monoxide, is the major cause of death from smoke inhalation. For treating a large number of casulaties in the field, the best mode of treatment would be intramuscular injection of antidote, preferably by an autoinjector. The two treatments currently approved for cyanide poisoning— hydroxocobalamin (Cyanokit) and the combination of sodium nitrite and sodium thiosulfate (Nithiodote)—must be administered by intravenous injection. Thus, no agent currently exists for rapidly treating a large number of cyanide poisoned persons. Another rapidly acting poison similar to cyanide, is hydrogen sulfide. People are exposed to hydrogen sulfide gas in a variety of occupations, most notably wastewater processing, and agriculture and petroleum industries. Up to 30% of oil workers have been exposed to sufficient amounts of hydrogen sulfide to have symptoms, and fatalities are not uncommon. No specific treatment currently exists for sulfide poisoning, and treatment consists of general supportive care.