Argenta Discovery and Zafgen Announce Contract Drug Discovery Collaboration in Obesity
News Jan 30, 2009
Argenta Discovery Ltd. and Zafgen, Inc. have announced that they have entered into major drug discovery collaboration.
Under the terms of the agreement, scientists from the two companies will exploit Argenta’s expertise in computer-aided drug design, medicinal chemistry, assay development, in vitro screening, drug metabolism and pharmacokinetics to accelerate development candidate nomination for one of Zafgen’s therapeutics programs for obesity.
Dr. Thomas Hughes, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Zafgen said, "We are looking forward to working with Argenta Discovery to accelerate one of our important discovery programs towards development. They have a solid and successful track record in drug discovery and through their contracts have placed many compounds into clinical development. Working closely with the Argenta team, we are confident that we will rapidly identify and advance drug candidates for Zafgen.”
Dr. Hughes continued, “Obesity is a global epidemic, affecting an estimated 400 million people worldwide, which also leads to an increasing prevalence of obesity-related co-morbidities, including type 2 diabetes. Zafgen’s unique approach of discovering and developing anti-obesity agents that target adipose vasculature to shrink fat cells to help the body sustain a lean, healthy state offers the possibility of a real breakthrough in this area, where there is considerable unmet medical need.”
Commenting on the agreement, Dr. Christopher Ashton, Argenta’s Chief Executive Officer, said, “We are delighted that Zafgen has chosen to collaborate with Argenta on this exciting program. Their decision to work with us is based on our contract research team’s acknowledged expertise, and our ability to offer a fully integrated approach to drug discovery. We look forward to building a successful and long-term partnership with Zafgen.”
Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the agreement does provide options to expand the relationship.
Computer bits are binary, with a value of 0 or 1. By contrast, neurons in the brain can have all kinds of different internal states, depending on the input that they received. This allows the brain to process information in a more energy-efficient manner than a computer. A new study hopes to bring the two closer together.
In new studies a novel oxygen-delivery therapeutic restored the function of oxygen-starved heart tissue in an animal model of global hypoxia. Unlike its experimental predecessors, the new drug does not appear to cause systemic side effects or overcorrect with excessive blood oxygenation, which can itself be toxic. Instead, the new drug delivers its precious oxygen cargo only to the tissues that need it most.READ MORE