Skip to content

Disrupting Metastases: A Novel Peptide Translates Concomitant Tumor Resistance

Therapeutic recombinant protein to suppress metastatic outgrowth

Published: 2nd June 2021
Disrupting Metastases: A Novel Peptide Translates Concomitant Tumor Resistance
David A Litman,


Cancer is responsible for the majority of deaths in high income countries. Most cancer patients die as a result of the formation of macro-metastases. Despite the clinical relevance, the patho-mechanisms of metastatic outgrowth are still poorly understood. Different studies indicate that primary tumors can inhibit secondary malignancy formation in mice and men. This phenomena has been termed ‘concomitant tumor resistance’ (CTR). Yet, up to now this could not be translated successfully into therapy.

Technology Overview

DKFZ researchers identified in an unbiased in-silico meta-analyses of >5000 patient samples a protein which supports the concept of CTR in terms of contextuality, as it - depending on its proteolytic cleavage - enhances primary tumor growth and inhibits metastases formation. DKFZ prove that a fragment of this protein predominates in the systemic circulation of healthy control and stable tumor patients. In a plethora of in vitro, ex vivo and in vivo studies the function of this fragment was unraveled and assessed as major inhibitor of metastasis formation. Further, the researchers generated this peptide recombinantly and used it in different therapeutic settings in murine metastasis models. Here, the peptide potently inhibited metastasis formation and enhanced overall survival. Thereby, the biomolecule referring to the present invention shows immediate therapeutic potential in various metastatic cancer types.

Stage of Development

in vivo POC


  • State of the art treatments do not mediate long-term curative benefits against metastases formation and progression
  • Takes advantages of a better understanding of concomitant tumor resistance
  • Endogenous biomolecule with immediate therapeutic potential
  • Inhibits metastasis formation at different steps of the metastatic cascade
  • As naturally occurring molecule in the systemic circulation the expectable side-effects should be manageable


Seeking development partner/licensee

  • Relevant patent applications have been filed and are pending.
IP Status
  • Patent application submitted
  • Licensing
  • Development partner