INTENSIVE CULTIVATION OF TAXUS SPECIES FOR THE PRODUCTION OF TAXOL® -- INTEGRATING RESEARCH AND PRODUCTION IN A NEW CROP PLANT
Taxol®, a new anti-cancer drug registered in the U.S. in 1992 for the treatment of ovarian cancer, is derived from plant tissues of the genus Taxus. While the bark of Pacific yew (T. brevifolia Nutt.) is the only current approved source, several alternative sources are under development. One of the most promising of these is intensive cultivation of yew plants in forest tree nurseries, as is being developed by the Weyerhaeuser Company. Since 1987 the company has been active in Taxus research and has embarked on a large scale production program to supply yew biomass for the production of Taxol. We believe that this approach can best provide a dependable, long-term and economic supply of paclitaxel, the active compound on which Taxol is based. The program is supported by Bristol-Myers Squibb, the pharmaceutical company developing the drug in the U.S., and by the National Cancer Institute.
Piesch, R.F. and Wheeler, N.C. (1993). INTENSIVE CULTIVATION OF TAXUS SPECIES FOR THE PRODUCTION OF TAXOL® -- INTEGRATING RESEARCH AND PRODUCTION IN A NEW CROP PLANT. Acta Hortic. 344, 219-228