Researchers pinpoint tumor-related protein, slow progression of cancers

medicalxpress | April 17, 2019

Locking a biochemical gate that admits fuel into immune-suppressing cells could slow tumor progression and assist the treatment of multiple cancers, says new research from the Wistar Institute, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and others. Published April 17 in the journal Nature, the study found elevated levels of fatty acid transporter protein 2, or FATP2, in a type of cell known to muffle immune responses and impede cancer therapies. After isolating tumorous cells from humans and mice, the researchers also discovered substantially higher numbers of an energy-granting lipid that FATP2 helps produce and traffic into cells. Collectively, the study's findings implicate FATP2 in maliciously rewiring the body's most common white blood cells, which otherwise act as first responders in fighting infections. When the researchers knocked out a gene linked to FATP2, they found that the tumors of several cancers—lymphoma, lung carcinoma, colon carcinoma and pancreatic cancer—grew markedly slower in mice. Administering the FATP2-inhibiting compound Lipofermata—identified by Nebraska's Concetta DiRusso in the mid-2000s—likewise helped slow and even reject tumors when paired with a drug that disrupts cellular replication. The study suggests that targeting FATP2 in the immune-suppressing cells could block the resulting buildup of lipids and mitigate tumor progression without significant side effects, the team said.

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With the prevalence of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) growing worldwide, the availability of primary human cells from these respiratory diseases is critical to increasing research and knowledge about the disease at a cellular level. In this study, we sought to identify genes differentially regulated in asthma and COPD lung fibroblasts (DHLF-asthma and DHLF-COPD).


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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

Iktos and Teijin Pharma to Co-Develop New Technology for Small Molecule Drug Discovery

Iktos | April 07, 2022

Iktos, a company specialized in Artificial Intelligence for new drug design, and Teijin Pharma Limited, the core company of the Teijin Group’s healthcare business that provides comprehensive healthcare services to improve the quality of life, today announced a strategic collaboration agreement in Artificial Intelligence for new drug design. Under the agreement, Iktos generative modelling technology will be implemented and applied to several Teijin Pharma’s small molecule drug discovery projects to expedite the identification of potential pre-clinical candidates. Iktos and Teijin Pharma will collaborate in developing new AI technology aiming to bring further improvement and speed to the drug design process, leveraging Iktos’ proprietary know-how in AI for Computer Aided Drug Design (CADD) and complementing Teijin’s research and development capabilities. In the recent years, Iktos has emerged as one of the world leaders in AI for drug design, establishing multiple collaborations with renowned pharmaceutical companies and successfully developing the AI software platforms Makya™ for new drug design and Spaya™ for synthesis planning. Iktos’ generative AI technology, based on deep generative models, automatically designs virtual novel molecules presenting the desirable characteristics specified by the researchers. This approach brings unprecedented efficiency in the exploration of chemical space and produces innovative molecule designs with greater freedom to operate. It is a novel solution, validated through many collaborations, to one of the key challenges in drug design: the rapid identification of molecules that simultaneously satisfy multiple parameters, such as potency, selectivity, safety, and project-specific properties. Based on the recent drastic demographic change and increased health consciousness, Teijin Pharma is committed to providing healthcare solutions in the priority fields of bone, joint, rehabilitation, neurology, respiratory, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases. Creating innovative drugs is one of the company’s core business strategies and Teijin Pharma is now focusing on strengthening technological foundation for small molecule drugs that play major roles among the drug modalities for innovative drug discovery. "We are thrilled and proud to announce a strategic collaboration with Teijin Pharma, a leading company that contributes to society by providing advanced healthcare solutions. It is a major recognition for Iktos to be selected by Teijin Pharma as a strategic partner for implementation, development, and application of generative modeling technology for new drug design. Iktos has been a pioneer in the application of generative models for drug discovery and is recognized as a world leader in the technology space that has the potential to disrupt the way new therapeutics are designed.’’ “Our ultimate objective is to expedite drug discovery and achieve time and cost efficiencies for our global collaborators by using Iktos’s proprietary AI platform and know-how. We are confident that together with our Teijin collaborators, we will be able to develop new technology to bring further speed and efficiency to drug discovery.” Yann Gaston-Mathé, Co-founder and CEO of Iktos “We are delighted to create innovative new small molecule drugs together with Iktos,” said Ichiro Watanabe, President of Teijin Pharma. “We provide solutions in the field of demographic change and increased health consciousness and are focusing on the launch of new drugs. Iktos’ proprietary AI technology will dramatically accelerate our small molecule drug discovery. We continue to enhance patients' quality of life by providing new treatment options for diseases with high unmet needs.” About Iktos Incorporated in October 2016, Iktos is a start-up company specializing 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, the design of 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. About the Teijin Group Teijin is a technology-driven global group offering advanced solutions in the fields of environmental value; safety, security and disaster mitigation; and demographic change and increased health consciousness. Originally established as Japan's first rayon manufacturer in 1918, Teijin has evolved into a unique enterprise encompassing three core business domains: high-performance materials including aramid, carbon fibers and composites, and also resin and plastic processing, films, polyester fibers and products converting; healthcare including pharmaceuticals and home healthcare equipment for bone/joint, respiratory and cardiovascular/metabolic diseases, nursing care and pre-symptomatic healthcare; and IT including B2B solutions for medical, corporate and public systems as well as packaged software and B2C online services for digital entertainment. Deeply committed to its stakeholders, as expressed in the brand statement “Human Chemistry, Human Solutions,” Teijin aims to be a company that supports the society of the future. The group comprises more than 170 companies and employs some 20,000 people across 20 countries worldwide. Teijin posted consolidated sales of JPY 836.5 billion and total assets of JPY 1,036.4 billion in the fiscal year that ended on March 31, 2021.

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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

FSD Pharma Announces Launch of New Corporate Website

FSD Pharma Inc. | January 24, 2022

FSD Pharma Inc. a life sciences holding company dedicated to building a portfolio of assets and biotech solutions, announced today the launch of its newly designed website. The new site conveys the Company’s emerging position within the biopharmaceutical industry and its ongoing commitment to bring novel treatment solutions for brain and inflammatory disorders to millions of patients in need. “We have strategically assembled a team of scientists to help develop our powerful pipeline of next-generation therapeutics. With some of the greatest minds in neurology and inflammation working together to advance our promising therapeutic compounds, and supported by a strong balance sheet, we believe that we are very well positioned to continue the advancement of our three leading drug candidates: Lucid-MS, Lucid-PSYCH and FSD-PEA. The new look and user-friendly experience of FSD Pharma’s website reflects that, while also serving to educate clinicians, researchers, patients, and investors about our unique approach to delivering 'Total Brain Health'.” Anthony Durkacz, Interim CEO of FSD Pharma About FSD Pharma FSD Pharma Inc. is a biotechnology company with three drug candidates in different stages of development. FSD BioSciences, Inc. a wholly owned subsidiary, is focused on pharmaceutical research and development of its lead compound, ultra-micronized palmitoyl ethylamine or FSD-PEA Lucid Psycheceuticals Inc. a wholly owned subsidiary, is focused on the research and development of its lead compounds, Lucid-PSYCH and Lucid-MS. Lucid PSYCH is a molecular compound identified for the potential treatment of mental health disorders. Lucid-MS is a molecular compound identified for the potential treatment of neurodegenerative disorders.

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PHARMA TECH

ILC Dover Announces North America Expansion to Meet Growing Demand

ILC Dover | March 11, 2022

ILC Dover LP specializing in innovative single-use and chemical workflow solutions for biotherapeutics and pharmaceutical processing, announced plans to significantly expand production capabilities in its Juarez, Mexico facility. This expansion is in response to the Company’s unprecedented growth in its life sciences business and entry into sterile liquid handling and chemicals content market. This investment will generate additional production capacity for its single-use powder storage, single-use fluid storage, and fluid transfer solutions and is scheduled to come online later this year. It also dovetails with recent acquisitions of critical sterile liquid production to provide broader workflow solutions for the Company’s growing customer base. The expansion in Juarez will complement the current global manufacturing footprint in Frederica DE, Durham NC, Stockport UK, Rossens Switzerland, and Blarney Ireland for its pharma and biotherapeutics customers. “Expansion in Juarez is an investment in our customers’ success and the next step in ILC Dover’s global growth journey. It strengthens our partnership with key pharmaceutical and biotherapeutics customers around the world — solidifying our ability to expand our presence in critical products for life-saving therapies, improve lead times, and securing our customers’ supply chain in North America. Most importantly, this expansion strengthens our position as a valuable and vertically integrated partner for our life science customers — supporting customers to continue to improve and optimize their workflows.” Corey Walker, CEO of ILC Dover Operational in Mexico since 2013, the addition of 20,000 sq ft of new Class 6 and 7 clean room space will support multi-site production of solutions for the biotherapeutic, cell & gene therapy, and pharmaceutical markets. ILC Dover’s Juarez site will use the same processes, raw materials, and equipment as other sites in the global network to provide redundant supply and reduced lead times for customers — consistent with the Company’s global quality system. This most recent expansion showcases ILC Dover’s commitment to growing its life science solutions for its global customer base. The Company acquired two strategic businesses this past year to accelerate its trajectory in critical life science applications: sterile solutions manufacturer KSE Scientific and medical contract design and manufacturing company Flexan. The proven capabilities and synergies offered with the addition of both companies enable ILC Dover to link single-use solutions and chemical solutions across its customers’ workflows. About ILC Dover ILC Dover is a world-leader in the innovative design and production of solutions for biopharmaceutical, pharmaceutical, medical device markets as well as a leading supplier for the (aero)space industries. Our customers will attest to our relentless dedication to high value products, advanced technology, and responsive service, as our visionary solutions have improved efficiency while safeguarding people, product, and infrastructure in hazardous conditions through flexible protective solutions since 1947. About New Mountain Capital New Mountain Capital is a New York-based investment firm that emphasizes business building and growth, rather than debt, as it pursues long-term capital appreciation. The firm currently manages private equity, public equity, and credit funds with over $35 billion in assets under management. New Mountain seeks out what it believes to be the highest quality growth leaders in carefully selected industry sectors and then works intensively with management to build the value of these companies.

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PHARMACY MARKET

AIkido Pharma Reports Improved Manufacturing Process and New United States Patent for Pancreatic Drug

AIkido Pharma Inc. | March 04, 2022

AIkido Pharma Inc.reported an improvement in the manufacturing process for its pancreatic cancer drug, DHA-dFdC, licensed from the University of Texas at Austin. The Company also reported the issuance of an additional U.S. patent covering the drug, and the filing of a continuation patent application intended to expand patent coverage to other facets of the drug. With respect to manufacturing process, the Company reported the successful development of a new means for the scaled production and isolation of the key intermediate compound in the manufacture of DH-dFdC. The Company has now executed a further contract with its contract manufacturing organization, Parimer Scientific, to employ the new process to produce several thousand milligrams of the drug for use in formulation development and stability studies. The Company also reported that the U.S. Patent Office recently issued new U.S. Patent No. 11,219,633, which provides additional intellectual property protection for the drug compound. The term of the patent is expected to continue until May of 2035 with the payment of required maintenance fees. Prior to the patent issuance, the Company authorized the timely filing of a patent continuation application, U.S. Serial No. 17/539,682, in which additional claims related to various aspects of the drug and formulation will be pursued. "This new process significant step forward in the development of our pancreatic cancer drug and should permit production of the drug on a commercial scale at a lower cost. I am also pleased that we can continue to report expansion of the patent estate." Anthony Hayes, CEO of AIkido Richard T. Pace, Owner and Principal Scientist of Parimer Scientific, stated, "The newly developed manufacturing method is a large step forward for this innovative technology. I believe it will reduce cost per unit and at the same time increase batch production volumes." About AIkido Pharma Inc. AIkido Pharma Inc. was initially formed in 1967 and is a biotechnology Company with a diverse portfolio of small-molecule anticancer and antiviral therapeutics. The Company's platform consists of patented technology from leading universities and researchers, and we are currently in the process of developing an innovative therapeutic drug platform through strong partnerships with world renowned educational institutions, including The University of Texas at Austin and University of Maryland at Baltimore. Our diverse pipeline of therapeutics includes therapies for pancreatic cancer, prostate cancer. We are constantly seeking to grow our pipeline to treat unmet medical needs in oncology. The Company is also developing a broad-spectrum antiviral platform that may potentially inhibit replication of multiple viruses including Influenza virus, SARS-CoV (coronavirus), MERS-CoV, Ebolavirus and Marburg virus.

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Spotlight

With the prevalence of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) growing worldwide, the availability of primary human cells from these respiratory diseases is critical to increasing research and knowledge about the disease at a cellular level. In this study, we sought to identify genes differentially regulated in asthma and COPD lung fibroblasts (DHLF-asthma and DHLF-COPD).

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