Faculty Members

Sanjay Sharma

Assistant Clinical Professor
Oncologic Imaging
Department of Oncology
University of Alberta
Cross Cancer Institute
11560 University Avenue
Edmonton, Alberta T6G 1Z2
Tel: 780.432.8868


I completed my PhD. in Organic Chemistry from University of Delhi, India under the supervision of Prof S.C. Jain and M.Sc. from Marathwada University India. First post doctoral research was done at Medical Microbiology and Immunology and the second at the Department of Chemistry, University of Alberta with Prof. J William Lown. After spending four years in the drug discovery department of pharmaceutical company I came back to Cross Cancer Institute as a scientist in Edmonton Radiopharmaceutical Centre and as an Assistant Clinical Professor in Department of Oncology, Division Oncologic Imaging, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta.
Research Interests
I am presently involved in research projects including industrial, academics and clinical research studies. My research projects are as described below, which I am carrying in my lab.
Developing novel aromatase inhibitors for therapy and diagnosis of breast cancer. The objective of the proposed research project is to design and evaluate novel aromatase inhibitors for therapy and diagnosis in patients with breast cancer. We are developing innovative new agents as inhibitors of estrogen biosynthesis, which is a critical element in the development of breast cancer in post menopausal women. The outcome of this research will be the introduction of an in vivo predictive assay treatment response for patients with breast cancer, and potentially a novel aromatase inhibitor for use in therapy.
Developing no carrier added radioiodinated metaiodobenzylguanidine (MIBG). Since radioiodinated metaiodobenzylguanidine (MIBG) was developed in 1980, it has become widely used in the diagnosis and therapy of neural crest tumors as well as in the experimental evaluation of myocardial disease. Uptake of MIBG into these cells by both active transport and passive diffusion mechanism. In contrast, the only form of MIBG uptake in normal tissues is by passive diffusion, which at low concentrations of MIBG should be insignificant. Our lab is investigating the potential of using the more stable trimethylsilyl precursor of MIBG to prepare essentially carrier free product under relatively mild conditions.
Structural modification of ERC-9 for diagnostic and therapeutics of melanoma cancer. The compound (ERC-9) was developed by our group as a potential melanoma imaging agent. We are planning to start Phase I study in melanoma cancer patients at the Cross Cancer Institute. Despite some promising results associated with this compound there are some limitations like the role of ERC-9 in evaluating pulmonary metastases, the mechanism of selective uptake and retention of radioiodinated ERC-9 by melanoma tissues. We took this molecule as a lead compound and started working in a more systematic approach towards the lead optimization using SAR (structure activity relationships) based on structural modifications.



S K Sharma, A V Joshua, A Strelkov, DN Abrams and AJB McEwan. 2010 Structure activity relationship and biological distribution studies on N-[3-(4-morpholino)propyl]-N-methyl-2-hydroxy-5-iodo-3-methylbenzylamine: An antiproliferative agent. Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters (submitted).

Paul BT, Babu MS, Santhoshkumar TR, Karungaran D, Selvam GS, Brown K, Woo T, Sharma SK, Naicker S, Murugesan. 2009  Biophysical evaluation of two red-shifted hypocrellin B derivatives as novel PDT agents. J Photochem Photobiol B, 9, 94(1), 38-44.  

S K Sharma, W Zheng, AV Joshua, DN Abrams and AJ B McEwan. 2008 Synthesis and evaluation of novel 4-amino-4,6-androstadiene-3,17-dione: An analog of formestane. Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters, 18, 5563-5566.
AV Joshua, SK Sharma and D N Abrams 2008 A new short synthesis of (5)-2,3-dimethoxy-N-[(1-ethyl-2-pyrrolidinyl)methyl]-5- iodobenzamide: Dopamine D2 receptor. Synthetic Communications 38(3), 432-440.
SK Sharma, AV Joshua, MTM Iverson1, P Silverstone2, JR Scott, AV Joshua, AJB McEwan and T Tibbo.  2007 Synthesis and bio distribution studies of ERC-9, a melanoma imaging agent. European Journal of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging, 34(2), 88.
SK Sharma, AV Joshua, MT Martin-Iverson, P Silverstone, JR Scott, AJB McEwan and T Tibbo. 2007 Pharmacological Characteristics of Iozapine: A Potential Ligand for Brain Imaging of Clozapine Binding Sites Journal of Labelled Compounds and Radiopharmaceuticals , 50(1), P294
AV Joshua, SK Sharma, A Strelkov, JR Scott, MT Martin-Iverson, DN Abrams, P H Silverstone and AJB McEwan. 2007 Synthesis and biodistribution of 8-iodo-11-(4-methylpiperazino)-5H-dibenzo[b,e][1,4]-diazepine: Iozapine. Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters. 17, 4066-4069.
Papers presented at conferences and meetings
S K Sharma 2010 Iozapine: A potential dopamine receptor imaging agent. 93rd Canadian Chemistry Conference CSC 2010 Toronto, May 26-June 02.

S K Sharma 2007 Synthesis, structure activity relationship, radiolabeling and biodistribution studies on ERC-9. European Journal of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging, 34 (2), Abst. No. 88.

S K Sharma 2007 Synthesis, radiolabeling and animal biodistribution of iozapine an analog of clozapine as a potential dopamine D4 imaging agent.Journal of Labelled Compounds and Radiopharmaceuticals, 50 (S1), Abst. No. P294.

S K Sharma 2007 Synthesis, radiolabeling and animal biodistribution of Tc-BAT derivatives of N-dialkylaminoalkyl-N-alkyl-benzylamine for melanoma imaging. Journal of Labelled Compounds and Radiopharmaceuticals, 50 (S1), Abst. No. S12.

S K Sharma 2005 Use of novel Hypocrellin B derivative as photosensitizer for photodynamic therapy of UVB-induced skin pre cancers and cancers in mice.
Canadian Dermatology Association 80th Annual Conference, Quebec, Canada,

• Sanjay K Sharma and J William Lown. A general procedure for aqueous solubilisation of DNA binding polyamides.US patent applied in 2001 (pending).

• Sanjay K Sharma, Thomas Woo and Selvaraj Naicker. Rapamycin peptides conjugate: Synthesis and uses thereof. USP 7 659 244

• Sanjay K Sharma Thomas Woo and Selvaraj Naicker. Perelenequinone derivatives and uses thereof. WO/2007/016762.

• Sanjay K Sharma Thomas Woo and Selvaraj Naicker. Perelenequinone derivatives and uses thereof. GB 244 2915 Issued in United Kingdom