June 25, 2019 I C4X Discovery Holdings plc (AIM: C4XD), a pioneering drug discovery company, today entered into a collaboration with PhoreMost, a UK-based biopharmaceutical company dedicated to drugging ‘undruggable’ disease targets. The collaboration, focused initially in Parkinson’s Disease, will combine both company’s technology platforms.

The addition of PhoreMost’s SITESEEKER® screening platform will bolster the C4XD drug discovery pipeline by validating novel targets already identified by C4XD’s proprietary target identification platform, Taxonomy3®, and provide chemical starting points to launch drug discovery programmes.

Clive Dix, Chief Executive Officer of C4XD, said: “As part of our strategy to become the world’s most productive drug discovery company, we continually assess cutting edge technologies that add to our current capabilities in target identification and drug design. PhoreMost has one such technology with the potential to both validate targets and provide chemistry starting points for our molecular design platforms. This partnership complements C4XD’s existing target validation collaborations and enables us to accelerate our portfolio growth whilst decreasing the timelines in drug discovery.”

SITESEEKER®’s phenotypic validation of Taxonomy3® derived novel targets will enable C4XD to progress several Parkinson’s Disease targets to multi-target disease area partnering arrangements, or in-house drug discovery programmes. C4XD’s proprietary drug discovery Conformetrix technology, which allows the dynamic 3D shapes of free drug molecules to be precisely measured from experimental data, can exploit the rich information produced by SITESEEKER® to produce commercially attractive small molecule drugs. The complementary nature of these technology platforms provides the potential to extend the collaboration to additional indications in the future.

While the terms of the agreement are not disclosed, it is expected that both companies would share any revenues on validated targets produced by the collaboration.

Parkinson’s Disease is a progressive neurological disease with more than an estimated 10 million people worldwide living with the disease1. The total cost of Parkinson’s Disease in the US is c.$52 billion per year, more than double previous estimates2.

Dr Chris Torrance CEO of PhoreMost, said: “We are thrilled to be joining forces with C4XD within this neurodegeneration collaboration, a therapeutic area that has a pressing need for new and better targets. The opportunity to incorporate genetic insights gained from C4XD’s Taxonomy3® data alongside our SITESEEKER® screening platform has great potential to reveal highly relevant novel drug targets. We are also tremendously excited by the complementarity of our technologies. C4XD’s Conformetrix approach is ideally suited to use the 3D biological shape information derived from SITESEEKER® targets and convert this into small molecules starting points that will lead to the next generation of therapeutics.”

Further detail on technology platforms used to accelerate PD drug discovery pipeline

Taxonomy3® is a novel in silico platform technology that utilises proprietary ground-breaking mathematical algorithms to analyse complex genetic datasets to identify and characterise novel drug target candidates. Taxonomy3® is able to identify previously unknown genetic linkages and interactions between genes and biological pathways in a broad range of diseases. This enables the discovery of targets that cause disease, rather than those that are simply associated with its symptoms, and thereby provides the best starting point for drug discovery, biomarker identification and patient stratification, and ultimately improving the chances of clinical success.

SITESEEKER® from PhoreMost is based on the Company’s core proprietary protein interference or ‘PROTEINi’ technology. This probes the entire proteome in a live cell environment for novel druggable targets linked to any chosen disease using the massive 3-D shape diversity of natural protein fragment (sub-domain) libraries. This enables the systematic unmasking of cryptic druggable sites and directly links them to useful therapeutic functions.

The Conformetrix patented technology platform allows the dynamic 3D-shapes of free drug molecules to be precisely measured from experimental data, giving medicinal chemists new and unprecedented insights into the behaviour and physical properties of drug molecules. The measurement, analysis and use of dynamic 3D-shapes is at the heart of the C4X drug discovery engine enabling rapid progress in developing new and better drugs at a fraction of the cost compared to best industry practice.

1. Parkinson’s Foundation – https://parkinson.org/Understanding-Parkinsons/Statistics

2.Study commissioned by MJFF, Parkinson’s Foundation, Abbvie, ACADIA Pharmaceuticals, Acord Therapeutics, Adamas Pharmaceuticals, Biogen, American Parkinson’s Disease Association and The Parkinson Alliance (June 2019) – https://www.michaeljfox.org/news/study-finds-parkinsons-52-billion-economic-burden-double-previous-estimates

SOURCE: PhoreMost