Press release from Companies

Published: 2022-06-29 09:00:00

WntResearch AB: WntResearch initiates cooperation in blood cancer with a research team at the University of Helsinki

A research group at the University of Helsinki will carry out a study with the drug candidate Foxy-5 ex vivo, i.e. on tumor cells from patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML), a form of blood cancer. WntResearch has entered a cooperation agreement signed by Caroline Heckman at FIMM who will lead the project.

As previously announced, WntResearch continues to study Foxy-5 for the treatment of AML. The company has evaluated various research cooperations that may confirm the findings made by the Brazilian research group at the Hematology and Transfusion Medicine Center at University of Campinas/Hemocentro-UNICAMP in São Paulo. They concluded that Foxy-5, by mimicking WNT5A signaling, could represent a strategy to counterbalance several oncogenic processes present in leukemia, for example inhibiting cell growth.

WntResearch has chosen to cooperate with an internationally renowned research group led by the Research Director Caroline Heckman at FIMM (Institute for Molecular Medicine Finland, University of Helsinki) with which a cooperation agreement has been signed. WntResearch will contribute with the drug candidate Foxy-5, the company’s broad knowledge of this drug candidate and fund the implementation of this pre-clinical study.


“ I am very happy about this cooperation where Caroline and her research group will contribute with further insights. We’re looking forward to the results that may confirm that Foxy-5 also could be effective in blood cancer ", comments Pernilla Sandwall, CEO, WntResearch.


Although my group is focused on understanding pathogenic and drug resistance mechanisms in hematological malignancies, we are especially interested in identifying new ways to treat patients that no longer respond to conventional therapy, and to identify the patients that would benefit the most from these new treatments. Working closely with WntResearch, we can combine our resources to advance the development of drug candidate Foxy-5 for blood cancer patients. The study of Foxy-5 will not only be exciting since it will broaden our understanding of a biological network and its role in leukemia, but we also hope this will lead to clinical investigations and eventually a new treatment option for blood cancer patients”, says Dr. Heckman.


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Pernilla Sandwall, CEO, WntResearch AB


About WntResearch

WntResearch is a biotech company in oncology that develops new therapies intended to prevent the metastatic process. The company's research is focused on studying the endogenous protein WNT5A, which in scientific studies has shown to affect tumor cells' ability to move and spread in the body. WntResearch drug candidate Foxy-5 is a peptide that mimics the function of WNT5A and is intended to reduce the mobility and spread of cancer cells thus preventing metastases from occurring. Although current cancer treatment has become more effective, there are no effective ways to prevent the onset of metastases that cause about 90 percent of all cancer-related deaths. Foxy-5 has a unique mechanism of action and has shown a good safety profile with few side effects in two Phase I clinical trials. The safety and efficacy of Foxy-5 are now being evaluated in the ongoing Phase 2 clinical trial NeoFox, in patients with stage II-III colon cancer.

WntResearch is listed on the Spotlight Stock Market. For more information, please visit:

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About FIMM

The Institute for Molecular Medicine Finland (FIMM) is a translational research institute focusing on human genomics and personalized medicine at the Helsinki Institute of Life Science (HiLIFE) of the University of Helsinki - a leading Nordic university with a strong commitment to life science research. FIMM has a driving mission to perform innovative research on patients and populations targeted towards understanding drivers of health and disease and translating medical molecular findings into public and individual health outcomes. FIMM is part of the Nordic EMBL Partnership for Molecular Medicine and the EU-LIFE Community. For more information, visit, Twitter and LinkedIn.




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