Ghent, Belgium, February 28, 2019 / —Confo Therapeutics, an emerging drug discovery company, today announces the formation of its Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) with four key appointments: Radu Aricescu, Peter Kolb, Graeme Milligan and Jan Steyaert, Founder of Confo Therapeutics, who will serve as Chairman of the SAB.The SAB will work closely with the management team of Confo Therapeutics as it further develops its proprietary Confo® technology for structure-based drug discovery and advances its pipeline of GPCR modulating compounds to produce drug candidates for human clinical trials.“
We have attracted some of the world’s leading experts in three-dimensional structural analysis of membrane proteins, GPCR pharmacology and computational chemistry”, said Jan Steyaert, Founder of Confo Therapeutics and Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board. “The expertise and vision they bring to Confo Therapeutics will be invaluable as we continue to grow our pipeline and the Company.”
Dr Christel Menet, CSO of Confo Therapeutics, added: “The formation of our SAB serves as an endorsement for Confo Therapeutics’ unique technology platform and the applications of ConfoBodiesTM in GPCR drug discovery and structural biology. We look forward to working with the SAB to boost our drug discovery engine.”
Dr Radu Aricescu is a programme leader at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Cambridge, UK. His research focuses on synaptic connectivity, and uses a combination of structural biology methods, including X-ray crystallography and cryo-electron microscopy. These are used to define in high-resolution the architecture of neurotransmitter receptors and their supra-molecular assemblies, in order to provide fundamental mechanistic insights into the basic biology of neurotransmission.
Dr Peter Kolb is a Professor of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, funded by the Heisenberg programme of the German Research Foundation DFG, at Philipps-University Marburg, Germany. Professor Kolb is an expert in fragment-based and structure-based ligand design for GPCRs and enzymes and focusses predominantly on computational approaches.
Dr Graeme Milligan is a Professor of Molecular Pharmacology, Dean of Research at the College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences, and Gardiner Professor of Biochemistry, University of Glasgow, Scotland. His research group centres on the function, structure and regulation of GPCRs and their interacting proteins, having produced more than 500 peer-reviewed articles totalling more than 22,000 citations. In 2015 he co-founded Caldan Therapeutics, which discovers novel therapeutics for metabolic diseases and inflammatory disease.
Dr Jan Steyaert is Scientific Director of the VIB-VUB Center for Structural Biology, Full Professor (Gewoon Hoogleraar) and Director of the Department of Structural Biology at the Faculty of Sciences and Bioengineering Sciences at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), Brussels, Belgium. Prof Steyaert has pioneered the use of ConfoBodiesTM in structural biology and has enabled ground-breaking structural research on conformational states of proteins, including GPCRs. In addition to founding Confo Therapeutics, he has been instrumental in the foundation of Ablynx (now part of Sanofi) and Agrosavfe, which deploy camelid single domain antibodies for medical and agricultural use, respectively.