Professor Philip Hogg is Director of the Lowy Cancer Research Centre at the University of New South Wales and a NH&MRC Senior Principle Research Fellow. He was appointed to the ACRF Medical Research Advisory Council in 2003.
Professor Phil Hogg graduated with a PhD in biochemistry from the University of Queensland, Australia in 1987. Following post-doctoral stints in the USA and Sweden he returned to the University of New South Wales in 1992. His interest in cancer research began with a sabbatical at Harvard University in 1999.
Genes encode proteins, which are the machinery of life. All life forms make proteins that contain strong bonds between pairs of cysteine amino acids called disulfide bonds. Phil and his team have shown that some disulfide bonds have evolved to control how proteins work by breaking or forming in a precise way. He has called these bonds ‘allosteric disulfides’. Application of this basic research has led to the development of a novel class of anti-mitochondrial cancer drugs and a cell death imaging agent that are both in clinical development.
The first generation anti-mitochondrial drug, GSAO, has the potential to turn cancer into a manageable disease, like diabetes for example. GSAO is currently being tested in a clinical trial in patients with solid tumours refractory to standard therapies. So far GSAO is well tolerated with no observed toxicity and there is strong preliminary evidence of anti-tumour activity. PENAO is a second generation compound that has significantly better anti-tumour efficacy than GSAO and is poised to enter clinical trials in 2010.
Professor Phil Hogg’s team has invented the first effective small molecule, non-invasive imaging agent for dying and dead cells. This technology should have many applications both in the research arena and in clinical practice. Its most obvious clinical utility is in cancer (monitoring therapy) and heart disease (measuring damaged heart muscle).
See the link below for more information or further reading on Professor Philip Hogg, and his work: