Sosei Heptares Enters R&D Agreements with Oxford University and KU Leuven to Identify and Validate Key GPCRs Driving Gastrointestinal and Immune Disorders

Sosei Heptares Enters R&D Agreements with Oxford University and KU Leuven to Identify and Validate Key GPCRs Driving Gastrointestinal and Immune Disorders

Sosei Group Company

Sosei Group Company

  • The agreements build on Sosei Heptares’ target identification and validation strategy and translational medicine approach to drug discovery, enabling the company to rapidly prioritize disease-relevant GPCR targets for the structure-based drug design

TOKYO and CAMBRIDGE, United Kingdom, 08 Dec. 11, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Sosei Group Corporation (“the Company”; TSE: 4565), the global leader in structure-based G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) (SBDD) drug design and development, announces that it has entered into translational medicine and R&D agreements with the MRC Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine at the University of Oxford, UK, and KU Leuven, Belgium. The goal of the agreements is to apply the innovative technologies and research capabilities of the respective academic groups to identify, validate and prioritize key GPCRs underlying gastrointestinal and immune disorders, including inflammatory diseases of the intestine (IBD), as targets of SBDD.

IBD is a heterogeneous chronic inflammatory disease with increasing worldwide prevalence. Between 1990 and 2017, the number of people with IBD rose from over 3.5 million to nearly 7 million1. Despite the growing therapeutic landscape, more than 50% of IBD patients fail to respond to conventional and advanced therapies. Major reasons for treatment failure include limited understanding of the precise proteins, cells, and mechanisms that change in patients affected by this disease, as well as poorly understood disease heterogeneity among patients.

Studies by Professor Alison Simmons’ research group in the MRC’s Human Immunology Unit, based at the MRC Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine, will apply cutting-edge technologies in combination with access to human patient tissue samples to help uncover the role of GPCRs in driving chronic diseases. intestinal inflammation and offer new possibilities for the treatment of IBD.

Research at KU Leuven, led by Prof. Séverine Vermeire and Prof. Bram Verstockt, provides a complementary multi-omics profiling approach, which will interrogate highly selected patient samples to provide insights into GPCR expression and function. in the IBD interactome.2”. Through this work, the partners plan to identify and confirm in human organoid cultures the biological relevance of key GPCR targets in responder and non-responder patient populations to help further advance precision medicine in the IBDs.

Alastair Brown, Senior Vice President of Translational Medicine at Sosei Heptares, said: “These agreements build on our commitment to excellence in translational medicine and support our strategy to identify and validate GPCR targets. This strategy allows us to partner with leading academic research institutions to enhance our translational medicine capabilities and accelerate the opportunity to deliver novel GPCR targets for the treatment of gastrointestinal and immune disorders. Our partners, both in Oxford and Leuven, bring important innovative and complementary skills that we believe will help Sosei Heptares develop a more informed understanding of the role of GPCRs in immune disorders and accelerate future discovery opportunities. medications.

Professor Alison Simmons, University of Oxford, added: “We are excited to work with Sosei Heptares to combine our respective research capabilities to explore the function of key gastrointestinal GPCRs whose activity is impaired in inflammation. Our goal is to test our findings in human tissue samples and explore how these might better inform structure-based drug design for novel therapies to promote gut health in IBD.

Professor Séverine Vermeire, KU Leuven added: This agreement with Sosei Heptares is proof of the significant interest and potential impact that improving our understanding of GPCRs can have on future IBD treatments. We are delighted to enter into this R&D agreement, which provides an important link between leading clinical academic centers and a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company pioneering SBDD-focused GPCRs.

1 GBD 2017 Collaborators for Inflammatory Bowel Disease. The Lancet Gastroenterology and Hepatology. Volume 5, Number 1, p17-30, 01 January 2020
2 The Interactome is a term referring to the entire set of molecular interactions in a particular cell.

About Sosei Heptares
We are an international biopharmaceutical group focused on the discovery and early development of new drugs based on our proprietary GPCR-targeted StaR.® technology and structure based drug design platform capabilities. We are developing a broad and deep pipeline of new drugs in multiple therapeutic areas, including neurology, immunology, gastroenterology and inflammatory diseases.

We have established partnerships with some of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies and several emerging technology companies, including AbbVie, AstraZeneca, Genentech (Roche), GSK, Kallyope, Neurocrine Biosciences, Novartis, Pfizer, Takeda and Verily. Sosei Heptares is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, with corporate and R&D facilities in Cambridge, UK.

“Sosei Heptares” is the trademark and trademark of Sosei Group Corporation, which is listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange (ticker: 4565). Sosei, Heptares, the logo and StaR® are registered trademarks of Sosei Group companies.

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