Nereus Pharmaceuticals

Nereus Pharmaceuticals

Nereus Pharmaceuticals is a pharmaceutical company focused on the development of natural products from marine microbial sources into small molecule human therapeutics.[1] The major disease area addressed by Nereus is cancer. As of 2008, Nereus has no marketed products and its operating funds have been secured through several rounds of preferred stock sales.[2]

Type Private
Industry Pharmaceuticals
Founded San Diego, California, United States (1988)
Founder(s) Kobi M. Sethna, Stan Fleming, William Fenical
Headquarters San Diego, California, United States
Key people Kobi M. Sethna (President, CEO)[3]
Gary Shearman (Chairman of the Board)[4]
G. Kenneth Lloyd (Chief Scientific Officer)[3]
Employees 36[2]

Drug discovery

Until 2004, Nereus used methods licensed from the University of California, San Diego to retrieve and cultivate marine microorganisms, particularly bacteria in the Actinobacteria class and organisms belonging to Kingdom Fungi.[1] Since 2004, the company has focused on commercializing identified bioactive natural products.[1] As of mid-2007, two compounds were being examined in Phase I clinical trials: NPI-2358 and NPI-0052.[1]

  • NPI-2358 is a halimide derivative, halimide itself having been isolated from a member of genus Aspergillus.[1][5] This compound appears to selectively disrupt tumour vasculature through interaction with microtubules.[1]
  • NPI-0052 is a natural product of Salinispora tropica, a member of the bacterial family Micromonosporaceae that was first isolated in 2002 and taxonomically identified genetically in 2005.[6] NPI-0052 acts as a proteasome inhibitor.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Carol Potera (2007-06-15). "Nereus Prospects Oceans for Cancer Drugs". Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.). Retrieved 2008-01-19. "Nereus mines microorganisms collected from the ocean to find new small molecule drug candidates, much like older pharmaceutical companies discovered new drugs by screening soil." 
  2. ^ a b "Company Overview". Nereus Pharmaceuticals. Retrieved 2008-01-19. "Number of employees - 36" 
  3. ^ a b "Executive Team". Nereus Pharmaceuticals. Retrieved 2008-01-20. 
  4. ^ "Board of Directors". Nereus Pharmaceuticals. Retrieved 2008-01-20. 
  5. ^ US 6069146 
  6. ^ Luis A., Maldonado; W. Fenical, P. R. Jensen, C. A. Kauffman and four others (2005-04-15). "Salinispora arenicola gen. nov., sp. nov. and Salinispora tropica sp. nov., obligate marine actinomycetes belonging to the family Micromonosporaceae". International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology (Society for General Microbiology) 55 (Pt 5): 1759–1766. doi:10.1099/ijs.0.63625-0. PMID 16166663. Retrieved 2008-01-19. "Isolated from coarse sand off the Bahamas. The type strain is CNB-440T (=ATCC BAA-916T=DSM 44818T). (from Results & Discussion section)" 

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