Cambridge, UK, 06 August 2012: Horizon Discovery Ltd (Horizon), a leading provider of research tools to support the development of personalized medicines, today announced it has signed an agreement with Domainex to support Domainex’s TBK1/ IKKε oncology research and development program, which is conducted in collaboration with The Institute of Cancer Research, London. Under the terms of the agreement, Horizon will profile a number of lead compounds against a panel of X-MAN™ isogenic disease model human cell lines, which accurately model the mutations found in cancer cells.

 

Profiling of Domainex’s lead TBK1/IKKε dual inhibitor molecules against the X-MAN cell lines will enable identification of the effect of individual mutations on drug activity and resistance and prediction of which patient sub-groups will respond.  This will help guide the medicinal chemistry optimization program and will provide important patient stratification data for future partnering.

 

“Horizon’s oncology and genome editing expertise are a valuable complement to our in-house biochemistry, medicinal chemistry and computer aided drug design capabilities,” commented Eddy Littler, CEO of Domainex. “We look forward to working together to efficiently and cost-effectively develop a drug molecule for this important target. We also look forward to future collaborations with Horizon on Domainex’s epigenetic pipeline in oncology and with the wide number of projects that Domainex supports on behalf of its clients”

 

Kam Dhaliwal, Director of Business Development, Horizon said: “We are delighted that Domainex has chosen to collaborate with Horizon on their lead program, and look forward to leveraging our   Discovery Toolbox and Oncology expertise to help guide the program.”

 

Horizon’s Discovery Toolbox is based on its proprietary precision rAAV-mediated genome editing technology (GENESIS™), over 450 X-MAN human isogenic cell lines that more accurately model patient genetics (known as “patients in a test tube”), and 2D and 3D phenotypic assays. The Toolbox enables the recapitulation of the patient situation in vitro and allows screening of the most important activated cancer genes and pathways found in patients, under conditions that mimic the micro environment of the disease.

 

Financial terms of the agreement are not disclosed.

 

ENDS

 

Notes to Editors

 

Contacts:

 

At Horizon:

Kam Dhaliwal

Director of Business Development

Tel: +44 (0)1223 655 580

Email: Kam.Dhaliwal@horizondiscovery.com

 

Media enquiries for Horizon:

Katie Odgaard

Zyme Communications

Tel: +44 (0)7787 502 947

Email katie.odgaard@zymecommunications.com

 

At Domainex:

Joanne McCudden

Head of Business Development

Email: joanne.mccudden@domainex.co.uk

 

 

 

About Horizon Discovery www.horizondiscovery.com

Horizon Discovery Limited (Horizon) is a leading provider of research tools to support translational genomics research and the development of personalized medicines. The Company’s proprietary technology, GENESIS, is the world’s most precise genome editing technology. Using GENESIS, Horizon is able to alter any endogenous gene sequence of a human or mammalian cell-line quickly, reliably and without introducing unwanted and confounding genotypes and/or phenotypes.

 

Horizon has harnessed GENESIS to create over 450 X-MAN cell lines, the world’s first source of genetically-defined and patient-relevant human cell lines, accurately modeling the disease-causing mutations found in cancer patients. These ‘patients-in-a-test-tube’ are being used by academic and industry leaders to identify the effect of individual genetic mutations on drug activity, patient responsiveness, and resistance, leading to the successful prediction of which patient sub-groups will respond to currently-available and future drug treatments. This enables the design of shorter, more focused, and less expensive clinical trials, ultimately providing the tools to identify the ‘right drugs’ for the ‘right patients’ based upon the unique genetic mutations that define their disease.

 

In addition to the X-MAN cell lines, Horizon provides GENESIS and X-MAN derived products and services, with industrial application in: bio-pharmaceutical process optimization; clinical diagnostic development; drug discovery & development; and the provision of reference standards for genomic-based clinical research platforms.

 

GENESIS and X-MAN are registered trademarks of Horizon Discovery Limited.

 

 

About Domainex Ltd. www.domainex.co.uk

Domainex uses unique and proprietary technologies to resolve common bottlenecks facing the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries in the post-genomic era. Major discovery ‘gaps’ exist between the vast amount of genomic information that is now available, the accessibility of the corresponding proteins for use in target validation and drug discovery, and the identification of robust hits in a cost effective manner.

 

Founded in 2001, Domainex is a privately owned company based in Cambridge, UK.  Domainex has developed a discovery platform, which enables rapid progression of drug discovery projects from novel target through to Candidate Drug by means of its Combinatorial Domain Hunting technology, LeadBuilder virtual hit screening software, and its integrated approach to medicinal and computational chemistry.

 

Domainex’s patented CDH technology enables the cloning and expression of soluble drug target protein domains in E. coli, followed by the identification of those constructs that are able to bind a ligand. Domainex has also developed LeadBuilder – a virtual screening approach for targets which is specifically aimed at quickly identifying hit molecules that are ideally suited for further development.

 

The experienced medicinal chemistry team has a proven track record in supporting biotech or university groups by providing expertise to take hit compounds through lead optimization and on to candidate selection.  Three compounds to date arising from these collaborations are currently in clinical evaluation, with two additional drugs in preclinical studies.

 

About The Institute of Cancer Research

(ICR) is one of the world’s most influential cancer research institutes. For more information visit www.icr.ac.uk 

Scientists and clinicians at the ICR are working every day to make a real impact on cancer patients’ lives. Through its unique partnership with The Royal Marsden Hospital and ‘bench-to-bedside’ approach, the ICR is able to create and deliver results in a way that other institutions cannot. Together the two organisations are rated in the top four cancer centres globally.

The ICR has an outstanding record of achievement dating back more than 100 years. It provided the first convincing evidence that DNA damage is the basic cause of cancer, laying the foundation for the now universally accepted idea that cancer is a genetic disease. Today it leads the world at isolating cancer-related genes and discovering new targeted drugs for personalised cancer treatment. The Cancer Therapeutics Unit and Drug Development Unit at the ICR and The Royal Marsden were recently honoured with the 2012 American Association for Cancer Research Team Science Award for the “tremendous impact” of their preclinical and clinical studies.

As a college of the University of London, the ICR provides postgraduate higher education of international distinction. It has charitable status and relies on support from partner organisations, charities and the general public.

The ICR’s mission is to make the discoveries that defeat cancer.

 

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