A research team of the department of biotechnology and microbiology at Kannur University, comprising Prof. A. Sabu, M. Haridas, and Prasanth Shankar, has been awarded a US patent for the discovery of ‘Phormidin’ an inhibitor of the enzyme Fatty Acid Synthase (FAS).
This is the first international patent earned by the university. The award offers the promise of developing a new drug for cancer treatment.
The patent comes as a culmination of almost 10 years of research that began in 2010 with support from the Ministry of Earth Sciences.
According to Prof. Sabu, FAS inhibitors are expected to be future drugs in cancer treatment. FAS is essential for fat metabolism, and its inhibition leads to the death of the cell.
Phormidin has great potential in the treatment of obesity, diabetes, and tuberculosis. The new hope for cancer treatment is that the drugs developed based on FAS inhibitor may have better properties with few side effects, Prof. Sabu pointed out.