In 2008, Barbara Gerratana developed 9-deoxysibiromycin, an anticancer compound. It is an analog of the compound sibiromycin, which, although discovered in the 1970s, was found to be cardiotoxic and rejected for clinical use. 9-deoxysibiromycin was designed to be less cardiotoxic. After producing the molecule variant as designed, we discovered that not only was it less cardiotoxic, but that it was also more potent. Unfortunately, development of 9-deoxysibiromycin halted when Dr. Gerratana left academic research.
Project Marilyn seeks to raise funds for the continued development of 9-deoxysibiromycin and chemical analogs of 9-deoxysibiromycin. Our goal is to conduct blue-sky research and development as a nonprofit entity and catalyze the process of getting the industry to produce these as direct-to-generic drugs. There will be obstacles in the way; scientific obstacles, engineering obstacles, and political obstacles. But if this vision is successful, it means that pharmaceutical costs will be much lower, ensuring greater access to these therapeutics for Americans as well as people of all means around the world. We're happy to be laying the first bricks on the path to that vision.
This project is dedicated to Marilyn Rudensey, who passed away of triple-negative breast cancer during the initial stages of 9-deoxysibiromycin research.