Tosk is a dynamic, privately held biotech headquartered in Mountain View, California founded some 15 years ago to revolutionize cancer treatment. The company is led by distinguished veterans of the biotechnology industry, including CEO Brian Frenzel, who founded four highly successful companies after serving as director of corporate planning for Syntex Corporation. Brian and his team of world class scientists, directors and well known scientific and medical advisory board members have dedicated themselves to improving the quality of life of cancer patients worldwide by stripping painful, life threatening and dose limiting toxic effects from frontline cancer therapies. While the media focuses on potentially exciting cancer treatments such as immunotherapies, the reality is, most treatment options date back many decades. They work, but at significant sacrifice in terms of side effects and higher costs.
Our efforts at transforming the very nature of today's standard cancer treatments are based on two proprietary drug discovery platforms that use fruit flies as a tool to efficiently discover new, inexpensive, small molecule drugs. One platform enables us to screen compounds to determine if they have the potential to become drugs that eliminate toxicity. The other platform has enabled us to actively pursue a promising effort to enable treatment for some 40 percent of cancer patients who have a genetic condition that prevents treatment today. That effort is being funded by the U. S. Government’s National Cancer Institute, which has made it a number 1 priority.
We achieved a significant milestone in 2018, as human trials of 25 head and neck cancer patients given the common cancer drug methotrexate along with our drug, TK-90, demonstrated that TK-90, was effective in preventing mucositis. Mucositis is the painful, dose limiting and sometimes fatal side effect often associated with methotrexate as well as other palliative drugs and radiation. A followup test is underway to confirm results. Given our broad portfolio of intellectual property and products, unusual for a drug development company our size, we are looking to partner with a large pharmaceutical company that has the infrastructure to manufacture our products and take them to market in order to replenish its produuct line. Given the millions of people suffering from cancer globally, the need for Tosk’s revolutionary efforts is obvious and the market opportunity exceptionally large
Proven Solutions ImprovedSM
Tosk is developing a family of inexpensive, small molecule drugs — what we call CompanionTM drugs — that when administered alongside certain cancer therapies such as methotrexate, doxorubicin, cisplatin, EGFR inhibitors and radiation — what we call parent therapies — will significantly improve patient outcomes, enhance dosing regimens and cut the cost of treating both cancer and toxic side effects that might occur.
Tosk has patented two new pharmaceutical products and has two other preclinical-stage products in development.
TK-90: Our most advanced, patented drug, which recently completed human trials that achieved Proof of Concept, is targeted at mucositis side effect reduction. Mucositis is the painful inflammation and ulceration of the mucous membranes lining the mouth, throat, and digestive tract, usually as an adverse effect of chemotherapy or radiation. Mucositis is costly to treat and may result in affecting or even terminating optimum treatment. Oral mucositis, inflammation and ulceration that occurs in the mouth, is a common and often debilitating complication of cancer treatment. Mucositis in the gut can introduce a route of infection that can be debilitating and potentially fatal.
There were 1.7 million new cases of cancer and 600,000 cancer-related deaths in the U. S. last year. This is despite regular media reports of breakthroughs in treatment, such as monoclonal antibodies and immunotherapies, and many billions of dollars spent on cancer research. New approaches may have long-term promise, but the reality is, most cancers are still treated with drugs that are decades old.
Tosk uses two proprietary drug discovery methods to identify potential CompanionTM drugs. Together, we call these methods OMDSM for Optimizing Marketed DrugsSM because they allow us to efficiently screen compounds for their potential to block the adverse side effects of prescription drugs, or make certain drugs effective in patients who currently do not benefit from therapy.
Brian D. Frenzel, President and CEO
Mr. Frenzel has over 25 years experience as a biomedical company executive, including serving as CEO of Centaur Pharmaceuticals, CEO of Adeza Biomedical, CEO of Vesta Medical, and COO of Genelabs Technologies. Previously, Mr. Frenzel was director of corporate planning at Syntex Corporation, a principal at Booz, Allen & Hamilton, a consultant at the Boston Consulting Group, and a lieutenant in the United States Navy Nuclear Power Program. Mr. Frenzel holds a BS in physics and an MBA from Stanford University.
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