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Evotec and Harvard University to Collaborate


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Evotec AG have announced a second research collaboration, TargetEEM (Enteroendocrine Mechanisms), with the laboratory of Doug Melton, Xander University Professor in the Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology at Harvard University, Harvard Stem Cell Institute Scientific Co-Director and Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator. The objective of this collaboration is to identify novel enteroendocrine mechanisms, pathways and signals regulating key metabolic processes that have disease-modifying potential in diabetic patients. Evotec’s first collaboration with the Melton laboratory was focused on beta cell replication.

Type 2 diabetes is a disease affecting several hundred million people worldwide. Although treatment regimes based on insulin and insulin sensitizers are the standard of care and have helped patients tremendously, they are not modifying cause or progression of the disease.

TargetEEM is comprehensive screening effort by Harvard and Evotec designed to systematically search for novel pathways and targets that have the potential to address key pathophysiological mechanisms involved in insulin resistance and energy handling.

The basis of this effort will be disease-relevant animal models as well as unbiased transcriptional and proteomic profiling platforms contributed by both collaboration partners. Harvard and Evotec will collaborate in a highly integrated and fashion and share potential commercial rewards.

Dr Cord Dohrmann, Chief Scientific Officer of Evotec, commented: “Metabolic diseases and in particular diabetes continue to be on the rise and are not only a serious threat to patients but represent enormous challenges to healthcare systems all over the world. We are very excited about this second collaboration with Doug’s lab. It is designed to break new ground and identify novel enteroendocrine mechanisms with disease-modifying potential.”

“This collaboration between Harvard and Evotec, the second in the field of metabolic disease, benefits from our good working relationship and mutual interest in undertaking a comprehensive effort to elucidate the disease mechanisms that underlie this serious health problem”, added Dr Vivian Berlin, Director Business Development in Harvard’s Office of Technology Development.

Financial details were not disclosed.

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