Cambridge, UK, 14 June 2017/ Domainex Ltd. expands its partnership with Imperial College London, to discover novel therapies that reduce heart muscle damage during heart attacks. The aim is to discover a drug that inhibits the enzyme MAP4K4, which plays a key role in triggering cell death following a heart attack. The significant progress made in the first two years of this collaboration has enabled Imperial College London’s Professor Michael Schneider to secure a follow-on award of £4.5M from the Wellcome’s Seeding Drug Discovery scheme, to continue this pioneering research.
Since initiating the project in 2015, Domainex and Imperial College London have worked closely together to advance promising therapeutic candidates. Novel, potent, and selective MAP4K4 inhibitors have been discovered. Using human cardiac muscle grown from human induced pluripotent stem cells, these inhibitors have shown efficacy in protecting these cells against oxidative stress, a known trigger for cell death during heart attacks.
‘We have already identified a number of very exciting, novel inhibitors through structure-based drug design,’ said Trevor Perrior, Chief Scientific Officer at Domainex. ‘We look forward to continuing our strong partnership with Professor Schneider and his team, and to building on the excellent progress made to date. The innovative cardiac muscle assay developed by the team here at Domainex working in partnership with Imperial College London, is enabling early testing on human cardiac muscle cells, which will make cardiac drug discovery more efficient and effective in identifying efficacious candidate drugs.’
The Domainex team will continue to provide integrated drug discovery services from its Medicines Research Centre near Cambridge, UK including further biochemical, cellular and biophysical assay screening, structure-guided medicinal chemistry, coupled with drug metabolism, safety and pharmacokinetic assessment of promising candidates. The goal is to advance the project efficiently into pre-clinical development and ultimately to clinical evaluation.
Established in 2001 as a spin-out from University College London, Birkbeck College, and the Institute of Cancer Research, Domainex Ltd. is a Cambridge-based, privately-owned small-molecule therapeutics company that provides integrated drug research services to global pharmaceutical, biotechnology and academic partners. Services cover a wide span of the drug research value chain, from disease target selection to pre-clinical candidate nomination. Domainex's services include recombinant protein expression and use of its proprietary technology platform, Combinatorial Domain Hunting to identify soluble protein fragments for structural biology and assay development. Hit finding activities encompass assay development and screening utilising its BioassayBuilder, FragmentBuilder and LeadBuilder platforms. The core of the service offering is undertaking multi-parameter medicinal chemistry optimisation of hits and leads under the mantra ‘every compound counts’, which can save up to 30% on the average industry time from target to candidate. For more information, please visit www.domainex.co.uk.
About Imperial College London
Imperial College London is one of the world's leading universities. The College's 16,000 students and 8,000 staff are expanding the frontiers of knowledge in science, medicine, engineering and business, and translating their discoveries into benefits for society. Founded in 1907, Imperial builds on a distinguished past - having pioneered penicillin, holography and fibre optics - to shape the future. Imperial researchers work across disciplines to improve health and wellbeing, understand the natural world, engineer novel solutions and lead the data revolution. This blend of academic excellence and its real-world application feeds into Imperial's exceptional learning environment, where students participate in research to push the limits of their degrees.
Imperial collaborates widely to achieve greater impact. It works with the NHS to improve healthcare in west London, is a leading partner in research and education within the European Union, and is the UK's number one research collaborator with China. Imperial has nine London campuses, including its White City Campus: a research and innovation centre that is in its initial stages of development in west London. At White City, researchers, businesses and higher education partners will co-locate to create value from ideas on a global scale. For more information, please visit: www.imperial.ac.uk
For Domainex Ltd.
Dr. Thomas Mander MBA
Chief Operating Officer
T: +44 (0)1223 743174
T: +44 (0)7930 317729
For Imperial College London
Research Media Officer (Medicine)
T: +44 (0)20 7594 2410