Indications to Treat Pancreatic Cancer


Brain tumor cells depend on glycolysis for their metabolism of glucose to produce energy. This metabolic tumor cell dependence requires approximately 18 times more glucose than a normal cell to produce the same amount of energy. This led to the theory that if tumor cells are fed a “glucose decoy” (one that can’t convert into energy) to block specific tumor glucose metabolism, we can “starve” (kill) the tumor. 2-Deoxyglucose (2-DG) has been used as a decoy, but studies demonstrated that it does not have drug-like properties. To improve pharmacokinetics and increase specific organ and tumor uptake a new prodrug WP1122 was designed. While distinctively different from WP1122, WP1234 is a prodrug of 2-DG that increases half-life, has longer circulation time, but also enables release of an HDAC inhibiting short fatty acid, namely ethyl-butyric acid and higher uptake by the specific organs.  Studies have demonstrated a high uptake of the drug by the pancreas indicating a unique opportunity to target pancreatic cancer due to its highly glycolytic nature.


WPD through its development partner will be performing the preclinical work necessary to evaluate WP1234 as a potential treatment for pancreatic cancer.


Pancreatic cancer. Promising treatment combination can include radiotherapy.


  • WP1234 has benefitted from nearly $2 million in grants and approximately$1 million in development dollars invested in furthering the technology and is expected to receive over $2 million in the next 24 months for preclinical testing and Phase I clinical trials


  • MD Anderson, leading cancer research center in the world
  • MoleculinBiotech, Inc. – co-development partner
  • WPD owns the exclusive license to 30 countries in Europe and Asia and also Russia


The expected market size is in excess of $1 billion.

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