Orbit Discovery Limited – a company that focuses on peptide hits – has reached a research deal with Endevica Bio concerning a number of targets.
Endevica is a company that concentrates on treating cachexia – caused by cancer and other chronic conditions – and its most significant compound to date has been well-tolerated across phase 1 trials.
The partnership aims to speed up Endevica’s development of its advanced G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR)-targeting treatments. A technology platform incorporated by Endevica ensures the modification of peptides to modulate the activity of GPCRs behind the blood-brain barrier.
The platform also allows for millions of independent peptide sequences to be screened by using a combination of microfluidic droplet screening and bead-based DNA-encoded libraries. Furthermore, the peptide display engine is able to address soluble targets and targets in situ, both on and in cells, resulting in significantly more rapid discovery times.
Meanwhile, the central focus of the agreement is to establish peptide hits from selected library populations, derived from Endevica’s internal in silico and modeling tools. These will duly be applied to Orbit’s own functional screening platform where agonism of proteins can be spotted.
Dr Russell Potterfield, chief executive officer at Endevica, explained: “We selected Orbit as our discovery partner for ongoing discovery work because of the team’s experience in overcoming peptide screening challenges, alongside an industry-leading platform. The ability to identify functional hits to our targets using large libraries will be a more cost-effective and speedier option than traditional discovery options.
The pact also covers the development of cell-based assays, with an option for Endevica to further develop vital peptide hits emerging from screening activities.
He added: “We are confident that the combination of Orbit’s peptide discovery capabilities and our expertise in drug development will facilitate the accelerated entry of complimentary therapeutics portfolios into the clinic.”
Dr Neil Butt, chief executive officer at Orbit Discovery, was also optimistic about the partnership: “This agreement is further validation of the utility of Orbit’s discovery platforms and adds to an expanding portfolio of partners obtaining benefit from our unique ability to screen so many peptides directly in cell-based functional screens.”
He concluded: “Through these types of innovative collaborations, we play a critical role in accelerating the development of peptide therapeutics to potentially help people living with serious medical conditions.”