WELWYN GARDEN CITY,
- Terms Include up to
Heptares Therapeutics Ltd, the drug discovery company focused on
G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) targets, announced today that it has
entered into an option agreement with the Novartis Option Fund under which
Heptares will apply its proprietary StaR(TM) technology to generate novel
drug leads against a nominated, unspecified GPCR target of interest to
Novartis. The agreement includes upfront and potential milestone payments to
Heptares totaling up to
StaR technology enables GPCRs, normally membrane-bound, to be worked on in solution, allowing the use of structure-based drug discovery technologies and the discovery of novel drugs addressing this important set of targets. Heptares is deploying this technology principally to generate small molecule drugs against currently difficult or intractable GPCR targets in several disease areas.
Under the terms of the agreement with the Novartis Option Fund, Heptares will apply its StaR technology to a target identified by Novartis and drive a drug discovery programme against that target.
"This is an excellent early deal for Heptares, endorsing our StaR
technology and further strengthening our financial position," said
"The potential of GPCRs as targets for drug discovery is well recognized,
but it has always been a challenge to gain structural information on GPCRs,"
The Novartis Option Fund invested
About Heptares Therapeutics Ltd
Heptares is a drug discovery company focused on identifying novel drug candidates targeting validated G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) in several disease areas. Based on its unique StaR(TM) technology platform, Heptares has built an integrated drug discovery capability and aims to progress promising candidates internally and through strategic alliances.
GPCRs are the single most important family of drug targets in the human body, but because of their inherent instability they are refractory to structural studies and biochemical screening. StaR technology enables the engineering of stabilised GPCRs, making them amenable to these vital drug discovery approaches. There are many clinically relevant GPCR targets across a wide range of therapeutic areas where discovery is advancing slowly and for which structural information, novel screening approaches and potential antibody therapeutics would greatly enhance progress.
Heptares was founded in 2007 and its StaR technology arose out of the
pioneering work of Heptares' founding scientists at the MRC Laboratory of
Molecular Biology (
For more information, see http://www.heptares.com
About the Novartis Option Fund
The Novartis Option Fund is a
For more information: http://www.venturefund.novartis.com Contact Information: Heptares Therapeutics Ltd Dr Malcolm Weir Phone: +44(0)1707-358-629 Mobile: +44(0)7968-947268 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Citigate Dewe Rogerson Dr Mark Swallow, Dr Chris Gardner Phone: +44(0)20-7282-2948 E-mail: email@example.com
SOURCE Heptares Therapeutics Ltd