Axxam and Lonza Announce the Signing of a License Agreement for the Use of Axxam’s Photoproteins in Lonza’s Calcium Biosensors
Axxam and Lonza are pleased to announce the signing of a license agreement enabling Lonza to include Axxam’s Photina®, i-Photina® and Clytin® Photoproteins as calcium biosensors in Lonza’s broad range of Clonetics® Primary Cells. This license agreement with Lonza allows Axxam to further validate and exploit its proprietary technology platform on photoproteins, and to address relevant market needs.
Clonetics® Primary Sensors build on Lonza’s position as the leading primary cell supplier and industry leading transfection capability to address the widely stated desire by researchers to measure drug targets in a biologically relevant environment. Well characterised primary cells are expanded to generate a sizeable and robust cell bank. The sensor is added to the cell using Lonza’s highly efficient Amaxa® Nucleofector® Technology and substrate is added before the cells are frozen. The customer receives a frozen, ready to use product.
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Axxam and partners awarded EUR 1.5 million by the Regione Lombardia (Metadistretti) to support a drug discovery project on a new key metabolic enzyme
Axxam announced its participation in a consortium that has been awarded a grant of EUR 1.5 million by the Regione Lombardia (Metadistretti), covering 3/5 of the total project costs of EUR 2.5 million. This innovative research program is aimed at identifying selective inhibitors for ghrelin O-acyltransferase (GOAT), a very recently identified key enzyme regulating the food intake of a fat-rich diet, thus offering an excellent entry point for the treatment of metabolic diseases.
The grant, which is non-refundable and will cover R&D expenses over a 36 month period, is intended to accelerate the development of innovative technologies and products in the local non-food biotechnology cluster (metadistretto). Funds are awarded on the basis of the scientific, technical and economic merit of each proposal.
The consortium is led by CISI scrl, a non-profit pharma research company, and also includes Primm srl, a service company for several technology platforms. Axxam will provide its drug discovery platforms, including bio assay development, proprietary HTS technologies and screening compound collections. CISI will contribute with its resources and expertise in medicinal and bioanalytical chemistry, while Primm will provide specific expertise in protein expression and peptide chemistry.
This substantial financing from the Regione Lombardia provides important support to Axxam’s business strategy in generating lead compounds for targets associated with high medical needs.
Alessandro Sidoli appointed President of Assobiotec for the 3-year period 2010-2012
During the Annual General Assembly held in Rome on 20 May 2010, Alessandro Sidoli was appointed the new President of Assobiotec for the 3-year period 2010-2012.
Assobiotec is the Italian Association for the Development of Biotechnology, representing more than 100 companies and science & technology parks operating in Italy in various biotech-related fields: pharmaceuticals, diagnostics, agro-food, fine chemicals, environment, processing industry and equipment. They include emerging biotech companies and small to medium enterprises, as well as the biotech divisions of large organizations.
Alessandro is the co-founder and currently Chief Executive Officer of Axxam, as well as a member of the Board of Directors of Externautics SpA. During the ‘90s he founded and served as Chief Executive Officer of Primm and was also Director of Technology Transfer at San Raffaele in Milan.
Axxam announces appointment of Prof. Hanno Wild to Board of Directors
Axxam shareholders approved the appointment of Prof. Dr. Hanno Wild as member of the Board of Directors.
Prof. Dr. Hanno Wild is Head of Global Lead Generation and Optimization within Global Drug Discovery at Bayer Schering Pharma (BSP). Prof. Wild is responsible for all research activities with respect to generation and optimization of new chemical entities (NCE) up to preclinical development at all BSP research sites (Beijing, Berlin, Wuppertal) . Before the Schering integration in 2007 Prof. Wild was Senior Vice President Discovery Europe, heading all BHC Pharma research activities at the German research site in Wuppertal. From 2002-2006 he worked as Vice President and Head of Medicinal Chemistry in Wuppertal. Before that time he had various responsibilities at the Medicinal Chemistry Department in Wuppertal, e. g. as a section head, responsible for the Therapeutic area “Atherosclerosis“. From 1994-1996 he was delegated to the Bayer Pharma Research Center in West Haven, Connecticut. In West Haven Hanno started the first projects of Bayer in the cancer field including the project leading to the marketed product Nexavar. In 2008 Hanno was appointed honorary professor at the Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität, Bonn.
Polyphor Ltd and Axxam SpA Announce Ion Channel Collaboration
Polyphor Ltd - a clinical stage biotech company applying its proprietary drug discovery research platforms to address protein-protein interactions and other challenging targets and Axxam SpA - a leading company in conducting early-stage discovery research programs for the life science industry, are pleased to announce a joint discovery agreement with a synergistic combination of their discovery platforms.
Under the terms of the collaboration the two companies will work together to discover and develop innovative drug candidates for selected therapeutic areas such as pain, inflammation, and metabolic disorders. Axxam will apply its expertise and outstanding Hit Discovery platforms and capabilities and Polyphor will provide its unique, proprietary PEM finder® library for screening together with its expertise in medicinal chemistry, drug discovery and development. The collaboration comprises several discovery programs addressing very attractive ion channel based targets.
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Axxam Receives US Patent for Innovative Technology Photina®
Axxam is pleased to announce the award of US Patent number US 7,601,805 B2, entitled "Photoprotein with improved bioluminescence", describing the company's proprietary photoprotein known as Photina®.
The invention provides a chimeric photoprotein with improved luminescent activity and its use as a calcium indicator in reporter gene systems and in cell-based assays for the detection and measurement of intracellular calcium. This novel calcium-detecting photoprotein is applicable to a large number of different screening platforms for the pharmaceutical industry and for the study of any biological process involving calcium release.
Fast Forward, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and Axxam SpA join Forces to Accelerate Development of Treatments for Multiple Sclerosis and Type 1 Diabetes
Fast Forward, LLC, the commercial drug development arm of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), the leader in research leading to a cure for type 1 diabetes in the world entered a collaborative partnership with Axxam SpA - a leading company in conducting early-stage discovery research programs for the life science industry - to develop new treatments for two autoimmune diseases, multiple sclerosis (MS) and type 1 diabetes (T1D).
Under the terms of the agreement, Axxam will screen its extensive chemical library to identify compounds that can target specific ion channels in the immune system. Ion channels are tiny pores on the surface of immune cells that control the influx of charged particles and allow the cells to become activated to perform their natural surveillance and protection functions. Recent studies have found that immune cells in MS and T1D contain high levels of a specific ion channel, Kv1.3, and that the hyperactivity of this channel contributes to the dysfunction of the immune system in MS and T1D. If the initial research is successful, Axxam will have identified compounds that modulate Kv1.3 ion channel activities, and these will be further developed by the company as potential therapies for MS and T1D.
The agreement with Axxam is the first of its kind between cross-disciplinary patient advocacy organizations and represents a new frontier in which groups such as JDRF and Fast Forward ally to lessen the risk of drug discovery and accelerate the development of new therapies that can impact multi-disorders.
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