Realizing the Full Potential of Cancer Surgery
VGT-309 works by binding to cathepsins, a family of proteases that are highly overexpressed in a broad range of solid tumors. By binding tightly to these proteases, VGT-309 provides a sustained molecular signal at the tumor site, generating illumination throughout patients’ surgeries. Additionally, because cathepsins are over-expressed in cancer as compared to normal cells, VGT-309 effectively targets cancer cells while generating minimal signals in healthy tissue.
Easy-To-See, Targeted Tumor Marking
VGT-309 fluorescence is only visible once the agent is “activated” by cathepsin protease activity in tumor tissue. This binding-dependent activity increases the tumor-specific signal provided by VGT-309 while minimizing the possibility of background fluorescence.
The imaging component of VGT-309 is the near infrared (NIR) dye indocyanine green (ICG). ICG is compatible with all commercially available NIR intraoperative imaging systems that support MIS technologies and is the preferred dye to minimize confounding background autofluorescence.
Lung Cancer as First Indication
If the disease is diagnosed early and all tumor tissue is removed, surgery can be curative
MIS / Robotic-Assisted Surgery
Offer many benefits in lung cancer, but limit surgeons’ ability to see tumor tissue
VGT-309 May Provide the Missing Piece
Optimal tumor visualization with the potential to improve surgical success
Targets and binds tightly (covalently) to cathepsins, a family of proteases that are highly overexpressed across a broad range of solid tumors
Uses near infrared (NIR) dye indocyanine green (ICG)
Ensures retention of molecular signal at the tumor site to provide illumination throughout surgery
Creates minimal signal in normal tissue
Offers potential utility across a wide breadth of tumor types
Compatible with all commercially available NIR intraoperative imaging systems that support minimally invasive and robotic-assisted surgery
Minimizes confounding background autofluorescence
1. Olson OC, Joyce JA. Cysteine cathepsin proteases: regulators of cancer progression and therapeutic response. Nat Rev Cancer. 2015 Dec;15(12):712-29.
2. Kennedy, G. T. et al. A cathepsin targeted quenched activity-based probe facilitates enhanced detection of human tumors during resection. Clin Cancer Res 17, 3729–3741 (2022).
3. Suurs FV, Qiu SQ, Yim JJ, et al. (2020). Fluorescent image-guided surgery in breast cancer by intravenous application of a quenched fluorescence activity-based probe for cysteine cathepsins in a syngeneic mouse model. EJNMMI Res. 10(1):111. doi:10.1186/s13550-020-00688-0