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Synta Pharmaceuticals (SNTA) Using Teamwork to Battle Cancer

Founded in 2000, Lexington, Massachusetts-based Synta Pharmaceuticals focuses on the development of its oncology medicines. The company’s main product ganetespib, is an Hsp90 inhibitor used in the treatment of lung cancer, breast cancer, acute myeloid leukemia, myelodysplastic syndrome, ovarian cancer, and refractory sarcoma. Hsp90 Drug Conjugate is the company’s proprietary, small molecule cancer drug development program. The company has several drugs in phase 2 and phase 3 clinical trials, as well as some just starting out in the phase 1 stage.

When developing pharmaceuticals, it is vital to have a team of experts helping navigate the highly complicated and very involved waters of the development process. To this accord, Synta Pharmaceuticals recently announced the formation of its Expert Oncology Panel:

David E. Avigan, M.D. – chief section of Hematological Malignancies and Bone Marrow Transplantation, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center associate professor, Medicine, Harvard Medical School

Bruce Allan Chabner, M.D. – director of Clinical Research, Cancer Center Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center

Jeffrey A. Engelman, M.D., Ph.D. – director, Center for Thoracic Cancers Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, associate professor of Medicine Harvard Medical School

F. Stephen Hodi, Jr., M.D. – director, Melanoma Center Director, Center for Immuno-Oncology, associate professor of Medicine Harvard Medical School, Dana Farber Cancer Institute

Martin J. Murphy, D. MedSc, Ph.D., FASCO – chairman and chief executive officer AlphaMed Consulting, Inc.

Neil Lee Spector, M.D. – associate professor of Medicine, Sandra Coates associate professor, associate professor of Pharmacology & Cancer Biology, member of the Duke Cancer Institute

Cancer costs the world more money than any other disease, according to the American Institute of Cancer Research (AICR), racking up annual costs of $895 billion. More than half a million Americans die of cancer every year, making the disease the second-leading cause of death in the United States. Comparatively, heart disease costs $753 billion while traffic accidents and diabetes each cost about $204 billion.

Statistics like these drive companies like Synta Pharmaceuticals to aggressively usher their products to market and race toward eliminating the disease. By building a panel consisting of world-renown doctors and experts in the oncology field, Synta Pharmaceuticals has already taken a progressive step in the process of getting a new potentially life-saving drug into the hands of cancer patients.

Stay tuned as we follow the company’s progress along, as it is cashed up and recently cut staff back to 33 employees in order to maintain operations until at least the middle of 2017.

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