WARF: P08342US02

Glycosylated Warfarin Analogs for the Treatment of Cancer


Jon Thorson, Shannon Timmons

The Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) is seeking commercial partners interested in developing a library of warfarin derivatives that may be useful in the treatment of cancer.
OVERVIEWWarfarin is a synthetic analog of the natural anti-coagulant dicumarol. It has been used extensively as a rodenticide and as an anti-coagulant for human use. Recent studies have shown that some anti-coagulants can prolong the survival of cancer patients, suggesting that analogs of warfarin with novel or improved biological properties may be useful in developing new cancer therapeutics.

Adding or changing the sugars that are attached to known compounds can improve the compounds’ pharmacological properties. Glycorandomization (see WARF reference number P04020US) is an emerging method for rapidly creating a library of compounds with different sugar attachments. Glycorandomization has been successfully used to generate a large library of vancomycin derivatives.
THE INVENTIONUW-Madison researchers now have used a three step glycorandomization procedure to generate a library of warfarin derivatives that may be useful in the treatment of cancer. They identified a set of glycosylated warfarin analogs that show anticancer activity. Because warfarin is intrinsically fluorescent, these analogs also may be useful as research tools for studying sugar uptake in cells.
  • Developing new anticancer agents
  • Studying sugar uptake in cells
  • Provides a set of lead compounds that may be developed into cancer therapeutics
Contact Information
For current licensing status, please contact Rafael Diaz at or 608-960-9847.
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The University of Wisconsin and WARF –
A Single Location to Accelerate Translational Development of New Drugs

UW–Madison has the integrative capabilities to complete many key components of the drug development cycle, from discovery through clinical trials. As one of the top research universities in the world, and one of the two best-funded universities for research in the country, UW–Madison offers state-of-the-art facilities unmatched by most public universities.

These include the Small Molecule Screening Facility at the UW Comprehensive Cancer Center; the Zeeh Pharmaceutical Experiment Station, which provides consulting and laboratory services for developing formulations and studying solubility, stability and more; the Waisman Clinical Biomanufacturing Facility; the Wisconsin Institute for Medical Research, which provides UW–Madison with a complete translational research facility; and the innovative, interdisciplinary Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery, home to the private, nonprofit Morgridge Institute for Research and its public twin, WID, part of the university's graduate school. The highly qualified experts at these facilities are ready to work with you to create a library of candidates for drug development.