Project Brought Encycle and its Partners Together with AstraZeneca, GSK, Merck and Pfizer to Develop a Library of Nacellins and Vet Drug-Like Properties
Toronto, Ontario – August 12, 2014 – Encycle Therapeutics, a drug discovery company exploiting a revolutionary new chemistry to synthesize drug-like peptides, together with the University of Toronto and Université de Sherbrooke, recently completed the first phase of a large collaboration aiming to develop and validate the company’s platform technology.
The project was funded through the Quebec Consortium for Drug Discovery (CQDM), a precompetitive research consortium that funds the development of breakthrough tools and technologies that accelerate drug discovery, with participation from four members of the consortium, namely AstraZeneca, GSK, Merck, and Pfizer.
The major milestones, including the delivery of a library of small, drug-like macrocycles, or nacellins, were met successfully and within the timelines of the project.
Moving forward, Encycle may enter into more traditional, one-on-one collaborations with the participating pharmaceutical companies, which are focused on both specific targets of interest, as well as the further exploration of the unique chemistry pioneered by Encycle’s scientific founder, Dr. Andrei Yudin.
About Encycle Therapeutics
Encycle is a Toronto-based biotech company exploiting a unique platform technology that enables the rapid synthesis of drug-like macrocycles (or nacellins).
(Membrane permeable) nacellins have enormous potential as they can target intracellular protein – protein interactions, which are largely intractable to small molecule and biologic modulation, and can represent cheaper, oral equivalents to existing biologics (e.g., monoclonal antibodies).
In collaboration with several pharmaceutical companies, Encycle has recently completed a screening library of nacellins, many of which are cell penetrant and possess other drug-like properties.
We are also pursuing independent development of nacellins against integrin alpha-4-beta-7 (IBD) and SMURF2 (fibrosis). Our lead program seeks to develop orally bioavailable inhibitors of integrin alpha- 4-beta-7, which are safer and less immunogenic than marketed and investigational biologics targeting the same protein.