BUSINESS INSIGHTS

Iktos Announces Collaboration With Galapagos in AI For Drug Design

Iktos, | June 29, 2022

Iktos Announces
Iktos, a company specialized in Artificial Intelligence for new drug design, announced a collaboration with Galapagos, a leading global biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of innovative medicines, to apply Iktos’s generative modelling artificial intelligence (AI) technology in one of Galapagos drug discovery programs. Under the agreement, Iktos will apply its de novo ligand and structure-based generative modelling technologies and software Makya™, its AI-based retrosynthesis analysis and planning tool Spaya™, and its know-how in computational drug design to expedite the identification of potential pre-clinical candidates and to identify additional novel chemical matter with suitable properties. Galapagos scientists will benefit from direct access to Makya™ and Spaya™ as part of the collaboration.

Iktos’s AI technology, based on deep generative models, helps to bring new insights and directions into the drug discovery process based on a comprehensive data-driven chemical structure generation technology. This technology automatically designs virtual novel molecules with all of the characteristics of a successful drug molecule. This approach, validated through multiple collaborations, is a novel solution to one of the key challenges in drug design: rapid identification of molecules that simultaneously satisfy multiple parameters, such as potency, selectivity, safety, and project-specific properties. This approach uniquely enables the exploration of chemical space and produces innovative molecule designs with greater freedom to operate. Iktos has also diversified its R&D efforts into the development of an AI technology for retrosynthesis and has developed the AI-based retrosynthesis analysis and planning tool Spaya™ enabling systematic exploration and prioritisation of synthetic routes for a desired compound in minutes.

We are thrilled and proud to join forces with Galapagos with the aim to discover optimised lead compounds for one of Galapagos undisclosed small molecule drug discovery projects. Pleased to have earned Galapagos trust, we are confident that together with Galapagos established R&D team, we will be able to identify promising novel chemical matter and solve complex multiparametric optimisation problems. The insights and feedback from Galapagos research team will be highly valuable to guide us into improving our technology and products.”

Yann Gaston-Mathé, President and CEO of Iktos

About Iktos
Incorporated in October 2016, Iktos is a French start-up company specialized in the development of artificial intelligence solutions applied to chemical research, more specifically medicinal chemistry and new drug design. Iktos is developing a proprietary and innovative solution based on deep learning generative models, which enables, using existing data, to design molecules that are optimized in silico to meet all the success criteria of a small molecule discovery project. The use of Iktos technology enables major productivity gains in upstream pharmaceutical R&D. Iktos offers its technology both as professional services and as a SaaS software platform, Makya™. Iktos is also developing Spaya™, a synthesis planning software based upon Iktos’s proprietary AI technology for retrosynthesis.

Spotlight

To address the Zika virus public health threat, the Departments of Health and Human Services and Defense2F 1 are coordinating efforts to help accelerate the development of Zika virus vaccines. Given the need for a vaccine to prevent disease caused by Zika notably including Congenital Zika Syndrome (CZS),2 these departments and their respective agencies (hereafter referred to as U.S. Government or USG) developed this Strategy in support of the following Goal and vaccine development Aims.


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PHARMACY MARKET

Vivera Partners with NINDS of NIH to Identify Potential Stuttering Treatments

Vivera Pharmaceuticals, Inc. | May 18, 2022

Vivera Biosciences, a division of Vivera Pharmaceuticals dedicated to the research and development of innovative medical technologies and pharmaceutical therapies, is pleased to announce its collaborative progress on a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement with the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke an Institute within the National Institutes of Health that aims to foster and advance cutting-edge neuroscience research to reduce the burden of neurological disease. The collaboration aims to identify therapeutic agents for the potential treatment of stuttering disorders, estimated to affect approximately 70 million people worldwide. Stuttering, also referred to as childhood-onset fluency disorder, is a neurological condition characterized by speech disfluencies, which can be disabling to patients affected. While there are currently no FDA-approved therapies for stuttering, in recent years, much has been discovered to understand the underlying neurological basis for the disorder. Scientists at Vivera and NINDS have discovered differences in the structure and function of the areas of the brain that regulate the timing and initiation of speech related to stuttering. These neurological revelations and the potential to develop related therapeutics inspired the partnership between Vivera and NINDS. The initiative is unique because of the individuals it will be led by: Vivera Biosciences' Investigator, Gerald A. Maguire, M.D., D.F.A.P.A., and NINDS' Principal Investigator, Shahriar SheikhBahaei, Ph.D. Both are persons who stutter and doctors who have dedicated their careers to understanding the disorder they share with millions of others and one they are working to develop novel treatments for. "I am grateful to the NIH, NINDS, and Vivera Biosciences for supporting this translational collaborative research with my friend and colleague, Dr. SheikhBahaei, as we potentially develop therapeutics to assist our stuttering community," said Dr. Maguire. Dr. Maguire is a world-renowned clinical researcher. He has over three decades of experience as an academic psychiatrist and has served as principal investigator for numerous studies involving investigational medications for various neuropsychiatric disorders, specializing in stuttering. "This collaboration may be an initial step toward developing novel and personalized therapeutic approaches for changing the course of the disorder for people who stutter," Dr. SheikhBahaei. Dr. SheikhBahaei's graduate studies focused on how astrocytic networks control activities of respiratory motor circuits within the brainstem. He currently leads the Neuron-Glia Signaling and Circuits Unit at NINDS, whose goal is to understand how different glial and neural cell types in the brain contribute to the neural circuits controlling voluntary speech production to enhance the ability to intervene in motor control disorders like stuttering. "Vivera is confident in our choice in partnership with NIH," said Vivera's Chief Medical Officer, Stephen J. McColgan, M.D., M.B.A. "Since day one, Vivera has been dedicated to the research and development of patient-centric treatments," said Paul Edalat, CEO of Vivera. "This partnership with NIH and NINDS is about bettering the lives of people who stutter, further solidifying the Company's commitment to our mission." About Vivera Pharmaceuticals Vivera Pharmaceuticals is an innovative, science-driven pharmaceutical company located in Southern California. The Company has global exclusivity to license the patented and patent-pending TABMELT® sublingual drug delivery system for pharmaceutical use and holds its own issued patents on ZICOH®, a smart dose-controlled electronic medical device. The Company has also received a Notice of Allowance for its portable telemedicine station, MDZone. With multiple divisions, including its pharmaceutical, neurosciences, medical technology, biosciences, and advanced diagnostics divisions, Vivera Pharmaceuticals is vertically integrated with patented technology, manufacturing capabilities, and distribution for its products.

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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

Tasly Pharmaceuticals and Mauna Kea Technologies Announce Joint Venture and Licensing Agreements

Mauna Kea Technologies | July 12, 2022

Mauna Kea Technologies inventor of Cellvizio®, the multidisciplinary probe and needle-based confocal laser endomicroscopy platform, and Tasly Pharmaceuticals announced the execution of an agreement to form a Joint Venture. Under terms of the agreement, Tasly and Mauna Kea will form a Joint Venture that will (i) commercialize selected Cellvizio indications in China, (ii) develop and commercialize Cellvizio globally in the fields of Neurology and Neurosurgery, and (iii) manufacture Cellvizio units for the Chinese market. The JV will utilize both existing distribution partners and its own network of China-based marketing professionals to accelerate market adoption. In exchange for contributing licenses and other intellectual property to the JV, Mauna Kea will receive cash payments totaling $10 million, a 44.1% equity interest in the JV, and a 5-year commitment to purchase minimum quantities of Cellvizio systems and probes. Mauna Kea’s equity holdings are net of shares issued to Cenponts Tech Limited in consideration for strategic advisory services provided in connection to the transaction. The Joint Venture will be majority owned and funded by Tasly and jointly managed by Tasly and Mauna Kea. The Joint Venture will be in an immediate position to leverage Mauna Kea’s position as global leader in probe and needle-based confocal laser endomicroscopy, with its FDA clearance for neurosurgery applications, its broad regulatory clearances in the Chinese market as well as its significant installed based in leading hospitals in China. “We are delighted to partner with Tasly Pharmaceuticals, a life sciences leader in Asia-Pacific with a global presence. This transaction both expands the addressable market for Cellvizio and increases Mauna Kea’s capacity to invest further in product and clinical development, including molecular imaging and artificial intelligence. This announcement builds on the strategic repositioning we announced in December 2021 and our emphasis on forming capital-efficient partnerships that leverage the commercial reach of global biopharma and medtech firms while increasing patient access to Cellvizio.” Sacha Loiseau, Ph.D., founder and Chairman of Mauna Kea Technologies Kaijing Yan, Chairman of Tasly Pharmaceuticals Group, commented: “The field of biomedical engineering is an important part of Tasly Pharmaceuticals’ second growth curve strategy. The cooperation with Mauna Kea Technologies will enable us to quickly access large markets in China addressed by the multiple clinical applications of Confocal Laser Endomicroscopy. The recent advances in molecular imaging with Cellvizio are also of great interest to us since Tasly Pharmaceuticals could assist the Joint Venture in developing new combinations of Cellvizio with novel molecular markers, aligned with our vision of providing integrated solutions from diagnosis to treatment. We very much look forward to a fruitful and rich collaboration with Mauna Kea Technologies.” About Tasly Pharmaceuticals Group Adhering to the business mission of "To share the joy of health with all", Tasly has always been promoting the integrative development of traditional Chinese medicine and modern medicine. Tasly continuously focuses on the three disease fields of cardio-cerebro-vascular diseases, digestive and metabolic diseases and tumors, which have the largest market share and the fastest development in China. It is committed to providing drug R&D that is urgently needed for clinical use and even addresses the unmet needs in China's clinical market. By leveraging the coordinated development advantages of modern TCM, biological medicine and chemical medicine, it carries out the strategic layout of innovative drugs and continues to maintain its leading position in the industry and the development momentum of R&D and innovation. About Mauna Kea Technologies Mauna Kea Technologies is a global medical device company that manufactures and sells Cellvizio®, the real-time in vivo cellular imaging platform. This technology uniquely delivers in vivo cellular visualization which enables physicians to monitor the progression of disease over time, assess point-in-time reactions as they happen in real time, classify indeterminate areas of concern, and guide surgical interventions.

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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

Simulations Plus Hosts 2nd Annual Pharmacometrics Workshop

Simulations Plus, Inc. | July 04, 2022

Simulations Plus, Inc. a leading provider of modeling and simulation software and services for pharmaceutical safety and efficacy, today announced record-setting attendance and virtual content delivery for the 2022 Pharmacometrics Spring School using MonolixSuite™. New for 2022 was the introduction of the “NCA, bioequivalence, and beyond! Spring School” course using PKanalix™. Both workshops were held in March 2022. This year’s Spring Schools focused on population modeling for model-informed drug development and simulations of clinical trials using the MonolixSuite, and the analysis of PK data using non-compartmental analysis and bioequivalence calculations using the PKanalix platform. These courses, which were free to the pharmacometrics community, comprised both theoretical discussions and hands-on sessions. In total, there were 936 attendees from over 50 countries. The attendees were industry professionals from regulatory agencies, pharma companies, biotech, and CROs, as well as students and doctoral/postdoctoral researchers, with different backgrounds, who used the skills taught in these courses to make their modeling and simulation work more powerful and efficient. “The positive feedback and momentum from our first Spring School in 2021 carried forward to this year’s program, further substantiating the need to provide the pharmacometrics community with quality material and training. As a leader in providing modeling and simulation (M&S) software tools and services to support the industry and our clients in their efforts to leverage M&S for more efficient drug development, we were very pleased by the strong interest and support from the user community, and we look forward to offering our pharmacometrics workshops again in 2023.” Dr. Jonathan Chauvin, President of the Lixoft division at Simulations Plus About Simulations Plus Serving clients worldwide for 25 years, Simulations Plus is a leading provider in the biosimulation market providing software and consulting services supporting drug discovery, development, research, and regulatory submissions. We offer solutions that bridge machine learning, physiologically based pharmacokinetics, quantitative systems pharmacology/toxicology, and population PK/PD modeling approaches. Our technology is licensed and applied by major pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and regulatory agencies worldwide. Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) We focus our Environmental, Social, and Governance efforts where we can have the most positive impact.

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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

Prime Medicine Expands Leadership Team with Key Appointments to Support Continued Growth and Advancement of Prime Editing Technology and Portfolio

Prime Medicine | July 29, 2022

Prime Medicine, Inc. a biotechnology company committed to delivering a new class of differentiated one-time curative genetic therapies, Prime Editors, to address the widest spectrum of diseases by deploying Prime Editing technology “Prime Medicine is advancing a first-of-its-kind technology intended to expand the number of patients who may benefit from genetic medicines. We are thrilled to welcome Richard, Niamh and Fubao to the team. Together, they bring strong business acumen, extensive clinical and regulatory experience and leadership of successful teams that position us well to achieve our mission. These esteemed leaders have deep expertise across their respective focus areas, each of which is key to the advancement of our novel Prime Editing technology.” Keith Gottesdiener, M.D., Chief Executive Officer of Prime Medicine Richard Brudnick, Chief Business Officer, brings extensive industry experience, including leading successful business development transactions, across multiple stages of development and an array of therapeutic areas. Mr. Brudnick was previously Chief Business Officer and Head of Strategy at Codiak BioSciences and, before that, was Executive Vice President of Business Development and Alliance Management at Bioverativ, Inc., a company he helped found in 2016. Mr. Brudnick joined Bioverativ at the time of its spinoff from Biogen where, over the course of nearly 15 years, he initiated, led and completed numerous transactions, including for several of the company's marketed products and late-stage pipeline, including Tecfidera, Spinraza and its biosimilars joint venture with Samsung. Previously, Mr. Brudnick was the Chief Executive Officer of a regional pharmaceutical distribution business that he sold to a strategic buyer, co-founded two companies, and was a strategy consultant at Bain & Company. Mr. Brudnick earned his undergraduate degree in management science from MIT and his M.S. in management from the Sloan School of Management at MIT. Niamh Alix, Chief Human Resources (HR) Officer, is a human resources leader who brings nearly 20 years of experience helping to grow teams from small, early-stage organizations to global enterprises. She joins Prime from Orchard Therapeutics, where she was Vice President, Global Talent and HR Business Partner. Prior to that, Ms. Alix held multiple global and regional roles at Lonza, including HR Business Partner for Americas, Mexico, and Canada where she led the HR team and people strategy for a 5,000+ employee population across corporate and manufacturing clients, and across multiple scientific platforms including cell and gene therapy. Prior to that, she held senior HR roles of increasing responsibility at Novartis and Bristol Myers Squibb. She holds a master’s degree in HR strategies from Dublin City University and a B.Sc. in management from the Technological University of Dublin. Fubao Wang, Ph.D., SVP, Head of Regulatory, has substantial experience leading product development of genomic medicine products, as well as regulatory strategies and execution for both clinical and commercial-stage products. Before Prime, Dr. Wang served as Senior Vice President, Head of Regulatory Affairs at Asklepios BioPharmaceutical where he built and led the regulatory team to support the development of clinical-stage AAV-based gene therapy products. Earlier, he was Vice President, Head of Regulatory CMC at Sarepta Therapeutics, where he supported the development of AAV gene therapy and RNA products, including the FDA approvals of Vyondys and Amondys. He also served as Associate Vice President, U.S. Site Head, CMC Dossiers at Sanofi to support the BLA approval of Dupixent, a monoclonal antibody product. Prior to that, he held a 16-year tenure at Merck serving in research, development and regulatory roles of increasing responsibility, most recently as director, global and emerging markets regulatory affairs, led and contributed to the discovery and development of a variety of vaccine and biologics products. Dr. Wang holds a Ph.D. in molecular biology from Heidelberg University and completed his postdoctoral work in molecular biology at Stanford University. About Prime Medicine Prime Medicine, Inc. is a biotechnology company committed to delivering a new class of differentiated, one-time, curative genetic therapies to address the widest spectrum of diseases. The company is deploying Prime Editing technology, a versatile, precise, efficient and broad gene editing technology, which is designed to make only the right edit at the right position within a gene. With the theoretical potential to repair approximately 90 percent of known disease-causing genetic mutations across many organs and cell types, medicines based on Prime Editing, if approved, could offer a one-time curative genetic therapeutic option to a broad set of patients.

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Spotlight

To address the Zika virus public health threat, the Departments of Health and Human Services and Defense2F 1 are coordinating efforts to help accelerate the development of Zika virus vaccines. Given the need for a vaccine to prevent disease caused by Zika notably including Congenital Zika Syndrome (CZS),2 these departments and their respective agencies (hereafter referred to as U.S. Government or USG) developed this Strategy in support of the following Goal and vaccine development Aims.

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