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Sunesis Pharmaceuticals to Present Non-Clinical Data at the Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., April 09, 2008, 2008 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. today announced that the company will present data on each of its clinical-stage anticancer compounds at the upcoming Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) being held April 12-16 in San Diego, CA. Sunesis has built a portfolio of product candidates in oncology focused on novel pathways and targets, including inhibition of the cell cycle and survival signaling.

Data from non-clinical studies of SNS-595, SNS-032 and SNS-314 will be presented in five posters and one oral presentation during the AACR Meeting. New insights on the mechanism of action and anticancer activity of SNS-595, Sunesis' lead compound, will be featured on Monday, April 14, 2008. SNS-595 is a novel naphthyridine analog structurally related to quinolones, a class of compounds which has not been used previously for the treatment of cancer. SNS-595 both selectively intercalates DNA and inhibits topoisomerase II, resulting in replication-dependent DNA damage, irreversible G2 arrest and rapid apoptosis. A Phase 2 single agent clinical trial of SNS-595 in ovarian cancer and a Phase 1b combination clinical trial with cytarabine in relapsed/refractory acute myeloid leukemia are both ongoing.

    SNS-595 Poster Presentations

    Monday, April 14, 2008

    -- SNS-595 is a potent anti-tumor agent that has a dual mechanism of

       action: DNA intercalation and site-selective topoisomerase II poisoning

       Session: Stress Responses

       Abstract #1860

       8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Exhibit Hall B-F, San Diego Convention Center

    -- Sensitivity to SNS-595 is related to activation of double strand DNA

       break repair pathways including homologous recombination

       Session: Stress Responses

       Abstract #1859

       8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Exhibit Hall B-F, San Diego Convention Center

    -- Ex vivo activity of SNS-595 against biopsies of acute myeloid leukemia,

       triple negative breast and ovarian cancers supports ongoing and

       potential clinical indications

       Session: Novel Drug Targets, Agents and Mechanisms

       Abstract #2830

       1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. Exhibit Hall B-F, San Diego Convention Center

Suzanne Trudel, MSc, M.D., Assistant Professor, Princess Margaret Hospital, University Health Network, will provide an oral presentation on SNS-032's preclinical activity in multiple myeloma as part of a minisymposium on Tuesday, April 15, 2008. In addition, translational research data detailing the relationship between SNS-032's mechanism and its activity in certain types of cancer will be presented in a poster. SNS-032, a potent and selective inhibitor of cyclin-dependent kinases 2, 7 and 9, is being evaluated in a Phase 1 clinical trial in patients with relapsed/refractory chronic lymphocytic leukemia or multiple myeloma.

    SNS-032 Oral Presentation

    Tuesday, April 15, 2008

    -- SNS-032, a potent and selective CDK2, 7 and 9 inhibitor, demonstrates

       preclinical activity in human multiple myeloma

       Minisymposium: Novel Genomic Approaches, Drugs, Targets, and Strategies

       Abstract #4972

       4:55 p.m. to 5:10 p.m. Room 30A-C, San Diego Convention Center

    SNS-032 Poster Presentation

    Sunday, April 13, 2008

    -- SNS-032, a novel inhibitor of cyclin-dependent kinases 2, 7, and 9,

       blocks transcription of cyclin D1 and Mcl-1, causing cell death in

       mantle cell lymphoma cell lines

       Session: Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors and Cell Cycle Inhibitors

       Abstract #756

       8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Exhibit Hall B-F, San Diego Convention Center

Preclinical data providing new details on SNS-314's anti-tumor activity will be presented Wednesday, April 16, 2008. SNS-314, a potent and selective pan-Aurora kinase inhibitor, is being studied in a Phase 1 dose-escalating clinical trial in patients with advanced solid tumors.

    SNS-314 Poster Presentation

    Wednesday, April 16, 2008

    -- SNS-314, a potent inhibitor of Aurora kinases, has preclinical

       anti-activity and induces apoptosis

       Session: Heat Shock Protein Inhibitors, Aurora Kinase and other Mitotic


       Abstract #5648

       8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Exhibit Hall B-F, San Diego Convention Center

About Sunesis Pharmaceuticals

Sunesis is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of novel small molecule therapeutics for oncology and other serious diseases. Sunesis has built a broad product candidate portfolio through internal discovery and in-licensing of novel cancer therapeutics. Sunesis is advancing its product candidates through in-house research and development efforts and strategic collaborations with leading pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical companies. For additional information on Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, please visit

SUNESIS and the logo are trademarks of Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

CONTACT: Investors, Eric Bjerkholt, SVP, Corp. Development & Finance ofSunesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc., +1-650-266-3717; or Media, Karen L. Bergman,+1-650-575-1509, or Michelle Corral, +1-415-794-8662, both of BCC Partners,for Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Web site:

Ticker Symbol: (NASDAQ-NMS:SNSS)

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Posted: April 2008

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