Contrary to common assumption, the major challenges for industry–academia collaboration in drug discovery are not caused by misalignment of priorities or cultural differences. Rather, it is the practical issues of resource constraints, legal and administrative process complexity, and coordination that are the main barriers for such collaborations.
Beside the bureaucratic barriers, several collaborations and research projects have been started. Since many years the experts and technology platforms of ICIQ are contributing significantly to AiCuris’ research and development programs to discover novel anti-infective drugs.
The ability of antibiotics to kill a broad spectrum of bacteria has revolutionized medicine industry and world. However, the improper use of antibiotics has also resulted in an alarming dispersal of multiple-antibiotic resistant bacteria in the clinical as well as agricultural setup. There have been identified a number of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in clinical and veterinary settings.
The damaging effects of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) are already manifesting themselves across the world. Antimicrobial-resistant infections currently claim at least 50,000 lives each year across Europe and the US alone, with many hundreds of thousands more dying in other areas of the world. But reliable estimates of the true burden are scarce.
Many important, novel antiviral drugs have reached patients in recent years, making diseases such as AIDS or Hepatitis C manageable today, while only some years back, their diagnosis had been comparable to a death sentence. our world is in the midst of a global pandemic caused by SARS CoV‐2 (COVID‐19), and promising, novel small molecule‐based antiviral medicines have reached the clinical stage in record time, complementing vaccine and drug repurposing efforts to manage a global health crisis. After COVID-19 the next pandemic will come and we should much better prepared than in the past, where most of the pharmaceutical companies have stopped or reduced their anti-infective programs.
Against the general trend, AiCuris is dedicated to fighting infectious diseases with the passion to create resistance-breaking therapies against serious bacterial and viral infections for today and the future and brings 15 years’ experience to respond to current challenges. The company goal is to progress projects through pre-clinical and clinical development phases to reach the word wide market.
The ICIQ-AiCuris collaboration has contributed to multiple applications using the ICIQ medicinal chemistry platforms to investigate identified hits and optimized lead compounds in the antibacterial and antiviral area. So far, several projects have benefited, enabling hits to be progressed, validated or discarded. As a result, new antimicrobial chemical classes have been identified across the diseases in scope.
Joint efforts also succeeded in a EU granted project ViroFlow, which will be finalized end of 2021. Application of flow chemistry in combination with microfluid technology resulted in an novel lead series further investigated for Hepatitis B. Some compounds out of this collaboration may reach the GLP development phase very soon.
In addition, ICIQ platforms Crysforma and CSOL contributed to the strengthen the patent position of the marketed HCMV compound Letermovir marketed by Merck Sharp & Dome word wide and the development of Pritelivir, a novel and innovative drug for HSV treatment, which was granted the fast track designation by the FDA.
General concepts, projects, achievement and success cases of AiCuris anti-infective research will be presented under the focus on the contributions of ICIQ’s scientific experts and technology platforms.
According to the last information received from ICIQ’s safety department about the measures to prevent and contain COVID-19 at ICIQ, a total of 70 people is now the maximum capacity allowed in the Auditorium, so the seminar will be finally held in the Auditorium as well as through ZOOM platform too.
For those who prefer to follow the talk in a virtual format, please remember that you should register here
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