Strasbourg, France and Montreal, Canada, January 20, 2014 – Domain Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company specializing in the research and development of new drug candidates targeting G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), today announces the opening of its North American subsidiary, Domain Therapeutics NA Inc., at the NEOMED Institute in Montreal, Canada.
Establishing a presence for Domain Therapeutics in Montreal is part of the company’s strategy for bringing to market a new GPCR-specific biosensor technology, BioSens-All(TM). BioSens-All technology enables a deeper understanding of the signaling pathways that are activated by each candidate molecule and thus predict its pharmacological profile.
The technology was developed in the molecular pharmacology research unit headed by Professor Michel Bouvier at the Universite de Montreal’s (UdeM) Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer (IRIC). Domain Therapeutics will work in close partnership with the inventors of the technology at UdeM and McGill University.
A license agreement between UdeM, McGill University and Domain Therapeutics for GPCR-specific biosensor technology was signed at the end of 2013(1). The exclusive focus of activity at Domain Therapeutics NA Inc. will be R&D for its own projects and for those the company undertakes in collaboration with industry partners.
Domain Therapeutics’ presence in North America reflects the company’s desire to expand. The geographical proximity of Domain Therapeutics’ subsidiary will help to secure new partnerships with Canadian and US companies in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries.
“The move to Canada’s NEOMED Institute marks an important milestone in the life of our company,” said Pascal Neuville, board director and CEO of Domain Therapeutics. “We are confident that this foothold will help us to build strategic relationships with North American companies and to use the BioSens-All technology to accelerate the development of our projects.”
The NEOMED Institute is a dedicated center of excellence for drug R&D. It offers a high quality environment with access to highly specialized equipment. It also encourages synergies between resident companies leading to collaborative projects. One year from inception, the Institute is now host to 15 companies.
“We are delighted to welcome Domain Therapeutics into the NEOMED Institute and are confident that its research work will be successful,” said Max Fehlmann, president and CEO of the NEOMED Institute. “Following on from an initial license agreement with local organizations, we think that other opportunities for collaborations will emerge and that joint research programs will be set up with our resident companies.”
“We are very pleased that Domain Therapeutics has decided to open this subsidiary in Montreal and to take advantage of the facilities at the NEOMED Institute. This initiative will expedite the process of bringing to market an important element of the IRIC technology portfolio,” said Steven Klein, vice-president, business development at the Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer – Commercialization of Research (IRICoR). “Our continuing collaboration with Domain Therapeutics and with our research partners, particularly Professor Bouvier, along with researchers at McGill, Universite de Sherbrooke and the Sainte-Justine University Hospital Research Center, will also help to produce additional novel biosensors, which will further strengthen the Company’s BioSens-All platform.”
The BioSens-All technology is the second technology acquired by Domain Therapeutics. The company also owns DTect-All(TM), a specialist screening platform for the discovery of innovative drugs that target GPCRs. With these two complementary, proprietary technologies to its name, Domain Therapeutics is positioning itself as a key international player in the discovery of drugs for GPCRs.
About G protein-coupled receptors and BioSens-All technology
G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) belong to the family of membrane receptors and constitute one of the main classes of therapeutic targets for many indications of the central nervous system, metabolic disorders and cardiovascular, respiratory, urinary or gastrointestinal diseases. The binding of a hormone or a specific ligand to a receptor’s binding site activates either one or several pathways for intracellular signaling. This enables the cell to provide an adapted response to the change in its environment. The many drugs that target GPCRs represent about 40 per cent of all treatments on the market, but only address 15 per cent of GPCRs. Industry scientists in the sector are now researching treatments that work on the remaining 85 per cent of GPCRs. These treatments will be better adapted to patients’ physiology with fewer risks of side effects. The molecules in question are called allosteric modulators and biased ligands. Biosensor technology enables us to understand the signaling pathways that are activated by each candidate molecule and thus predict its pharmacological profile. This approach makes it possible to choose at a very early development stage the molecule(s) that have the best chance of being active without presenting side effects or inducing tolerance to treatment.
About Domain Therapeutics
Domain Therapeutics is a biopharmaceutical company based in Strasbourg, France, dedicated to the discovery and early development of small molecules targeting G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), one of the most important classes of drug targets. Domain Therapeutics identifies and develops new drug candidates, allosteric modulators and biased ligands through its innovative approach and distinctive technologies. The company provides access to its technologies through research and collaborative agreements. It develops its own pipeline for components up to the stage of optimized lead product for major indications in central nervous system and metabolic disorders.
In January 2014, the company established its subsidiary, Domain Therapeutics NA Inc., at the NEOMED Institute in Montreal, Canada.
Find out more at: http://www.domaintherapeutics.com
About the NEOMED Institute
The NEOMED Institute is a state-of-the-art R&D facility in the Montreal Technoparc. The Institute acts as an open-access drug discovery hub hosting drug discovery and development research companies, providing a unique environment to foster innovation, collaboration and creativity.
For more information, please visit: http://www.neomed.ca
About the Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer – Commercialization of Research (IRICoR)
IRICoR is a not-for-profit organization whose mandate is to accelerate the discovery, development and commercialization of novel drugs that originate at Universite de Montreal’s Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer and related research units. IRICoR, as a Centre of Excellence in Commercialization and Research, invests in highly innovative projects to rapidly transition them from academia to the market, while identifying the best development partners for these commercially promising projects.
For more information about IRICoR: http://www.iricor.ca
About the Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer (IRIC)
An ultra-modern research hub and training centre located in the heart of the Universite de Montreal, the Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer (IRIC) was created in 2003 to shed light on the mechanisms of cancer and discover new, more effective therapies to counter this disease. IRIC operates according to a model that is unique in Canada. Its innovative approach to research has already led to discoveries that will, over the coming years, have a significant impact on the fight against cancer.
For more information: http://www.iric.ca