Drug Research
Drug Discovery & Development

Warp Drive Bio forms technology alliance with GSK

Published 30 March 2017

Warp Drive Bio has partnered with GSK to discover potential therapeutics in oncology and other diseases.

The collaboration combines Warp Drive’s Small Molecule-Assisted Receptor Targeting (SMART™) platform with GSK’s expertise in Encoded Library Technology (ELT) to discover drugs that address high-value intractable targets.

“This unique collaboration with GSK offers an invaluable opportunity to combine two powerful platforms to create an unprecedented library of up to 200 million diverse SMART compounds for the discovery of lead chemical matter against a set of currently-inaccessible targets,” said Alan Rigby, Ph.D., chief scientific officer of Warp Drive Bio.

Warp Drive’s SMART platform enables the discovery of small molecule drugs targeting disease-causing proteins previously considered to be intractable by traditional pharmaceutical modalities.

It is estimated that more than 80% of human proteins cannot be targeted by conventional drug discovery approaches – such as small molecules and protein biologics – either because they do not contain a binding site required by small molecule drugs, or are intracellular and therefore inaccessible to biologics.

SMART drugs bind to an intracellular receptor, such as FKBP12, and form a complex that assumes the properties of an “intracellular biologic,” providing the opportunity for therapeutic modulation of a disease-causing protein.

This novel approach enables Warp Drive Bio researchers to address targets previously considered “undruggable,” with a vanguard program targeting oncogenic forms of the RAS protein.

Under the terms of the collaboration, Warp Drive and GSK will design a custom DNA-tagged SMART library that GSK will build and screen against a set of ‘undruggable’ targets related to diseases of high unmet medical need.

Among the Warp Drive targets are RAS, SHP2 and Cbl-b. Each company will independently develop and commercialize products against its respective targets.

“Our SMART platform builds on mechanisms adopted and evolved by nature to modulate intractable targets,” said Laurence Reid, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer of Warp Drive Bio.

“The partnership with GSK allows us to tap into unique chemical diversity inspired by nature in search of new transformative medicines to treat human disease.”



Source: Company Press Release