• Combining Zealand’s expertise in discovery and development of peptide therapeutics with the unique expertise in identifying therapeutically-relevant bioactive peptides from venoms at The University of Queensland in Australia
  • Collaboration in line with Zealand’s strategy to access cutting-edge technology to develop specialty medicines to treat gastrointestinal and metabolic diseases

COPENHAGEN, Denmark, and BRISBANE, Australia I February 20, 2018 I Zealand Pharma A/S (“Zealand”) and UniQuest – the commercialisation company of The University of Queensland (UQ) – today announce a collaboration to identify novel peptide therapeutics inspired by venoms as potential new treatments for gastrointestinal diseases.

Zealand Pharma will use the proprietary peptide technology and world-leading expertise of UQ’s Institute for Molecular Bioscience (IMB), as well as expertise from Flinders University in South Australia.

Zealand has a strong track record and world-leading capabilities in the discovery and development of peptides for therapeutic use in gastrointestinal and metabolic diseases.

UQ is ranked in the world’s top 20 universities for life sciences research and the IMB is world-renowned in peptide drug discovery, possessing one of the largest collections of animal venoms and extensive experience in identifying novel bioactive peptides from venoms.

Zealand and the university researchers will work together to characterise venom-derived peptides that act against undisclosed targets to identify novel drug candidates for further development by Zealand.

Andrew Parker, Executive Vice President and Chief Science Officer of Zealand, comments: “We are very pleased to have established this collaboration with the University of Queensland via UniQuest. Accessing peptide libraries and cutting-edge technology is a key element of our strategy to enhance our peptide capabilities and expand our future clinical pipeline. Working with the University of Queensland’s unique peptide libraries and peptide expertise will provide an additional option for Zealand to identify novel peptide therapeutics against a range of drug targets to treat gastrointestinal and metabolic diseases.” 

Dr Dean Moss, Chief Executive Officer of UniQuest, comments: “We are delighted to combine the world-class facilities, and venom-based drug discovery expertise of IMB, with Zealand Pharma’s trailblazing capabilities in peptide drug discovery and development in the under-served market of gastrointestinal diseases.”

About Zealand Pharma A/S

Zealand Pharma A/S (Nasdaq Copenhagen and New York: ZEAL) (“Zealand”) is a biotechnology company focused on the discovery, design and development of innovative peptide-based medicines. Zealand has a portfolio of medicines and product candidates under license collaborations with Sanofi and Boehringer Ingelheim, and a pipeline of internal product candidates focusing on specialty gastrointestinal and metabolic diseases.

Zealand is based in Copenhagen (Glostrup), Denmark. For further information about the Company’s business and activities, please visit www.zealandpharma.com or follow Zealand on LinkedIn or Twitter @ZealandPharma.

About UniQuest

UniQuest is Australia’s leading university commercialising entity, managing the intellectual property of The University of Queensland. It benchmarks in the top 10 percent globally for university-based technology transfer offices. Since 1984, UniQuest has built, commercialised and managed an extensive intellectual property portfolio. Among others, UniQuest was responsible for commercialising the HPV vaccine Gardasil®, the Triple P – Positive Parenting Program, the image correction technology used in two-thirds of the world’s MRI machines, and a potential new treatment for pain through spin-out company Spinifex Pharmaceuticals Pty Ltd – a biopharmaceutical company acquired recently in one of Australia’s largest ever biotech deals.

SOURCE: Zealand Pharma