Research fields

Targeted Therapy

Over the past decades, with rapidly advancing biotechnology, our knowledge of cancer development has greatly expanded. Genomic sequencing and pathway analysis have revealed a plethora of driver mutations and signaling nodes critical for tumor development. Many of them can be chemically modulated. As such, we have witnessed an emergence of targeted therapy efficacious in patients stratified with prognostic and predictive biomarkers. Unlike traditional chemotherapy that kills rapidly dividing normal and malignant cells, targeted therapy acts on molecular entity associated with cancer cells to achieve selectivity and safety and therefore are better tolerated. Wigen aims to expand the repertoire of targeted therapy to meet patients’ needs by developing small molecule drugs on validated targets in Asian prevalent lung and liver cancers.

Cancer immunotherapy

Cancer immunotherapy exploits the immune system to attack tumor. It primarily boosts existing immune mechanisms against tumor. Current approved immunotherapies elicit immune responses through antibodies targeting surface proteins or recombinant cytokines. Among them, anti-PD1 and PDL1 antibodies that reactivate cytotoxic T cells otherwise inhibited by tumor cells have demonstrated efficacy in a range of tumor types with extraordinary potency and durability showcasing the power of immunotherapy. However, only limited number of patients benefited from immunotherapy due to the scarce of targets on cell surface that can be modulated by antibodies. We develop small molecules against both surface and intracellular targets to trigger anti-tumor responses.