Axxam Advances its High-Throughput Screening with Genedata Screener
Axxam, a leading contract research and discovery company focused on collaborative research programs for the life science industry, announced today that it is advancing its high-throughput screening services with Genedata Screener. Axxam tailors its high-throughput screening to specific discovery processes and effectively address challenging targets and multi-client/project research on a single platform. Axxam analyzes data produced by screening cellular or biochemical assays, based on fluorescence or luminescence readouts, The system’s high-performance data analysis across the entire screening cascade, support Axxam early-stage therapeutic discoveries in different therapeutics areas. Genedata Screener functionality accelerates the hit-to-lead process, optimizing researchers’ time and Axxam resources.
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Axxam awarded with EUR 0.5 million by the Lombardy Region to support a innovative high throughput method for early “in vitro” safety risk assessment of compounds.
Axxam SpA, a privately owned contract research and discovery company, announced today, that it has been awarded with a grant of EUR 0.5 million by the Lombardy Region. This innovative program (called Frozen4Array) is aimed to develop and implement an high throughput method for the early “in vitro” safety assessment of compounds.
The grant will support the development of an excellent tool to asses risks and opportunities of compounds already early in the drug discovery process.
An increasing problem of the drug discovery process in the pharmaceutical industry is the high attrition rate of drug candidates, caused by their unfavorable safety profiles. Therefore to build in, early in the discovery process, a safety assessment for the most promising compounds will help to prioritize the better suited compounds which will improve also the economics of the discovery process. Axxam is building up a panel of 20 different “liability” assays associated with liabilities regarding heart safety, liver toxicology, CNS safety etc. focusing on ion channels, GPCRs and nuclear hormone receptors associated with liabilities.
“The key advantage over existing compound profiling services is the use of functional assays by providing high quality data at an excellent price”, said Dr Lia Scarabottolo, Director of Discovery Services at Axxam. This is achieved by disconnecting the experimental activities (generation of dose response curves for each compound on 20 different liability targets) with the need of permanent cell culturing. Therefore the application of “frozen cells” is essential for the program.
Fast Forward, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and Axxam SpA
Renew their Partnership to Accelerate Development of Treatments for Multiple Sclerosis and Type 1 Diabetes
Scientists have found that certain links may exist between different autoimmune disorders, allowing research on one disease to shed light on another. One such potential link, between type 1 diabetes and multiple sclerosis, led to a three-way partnership between Axxam SpA – a biotechnology company based in Italy that conducts early-stage research for life sciences – JDRF, and Fast Forward, LLC – a wholly owned subsidiary of the National MS Society devoted to fast-tracking commercial drug development. Formed in 2009, the goal of the partnership was to develop potential new treatments for the two autoimmune diseases. Now, the three organizations are renewing their partnership to fund further research and development.
The collaboration was spurred by studies about a possible link between the two autoimmune diseases: high levels of a specific ion channel, known as Kv1.3, are thought to contribute to the immune system’s dysfunction in both type 1 diabetes and multiple sclerosis.
Ion channels are pores on immune cells, which control the entry of charged particles known as ions. In autoimmune disorders, however, immune cells do not operate normally: In type 1 diabetes, the immune system attacks and destroys insulin-producing beta cells; and in multiple sclerosis, the immune system is thought to attack and damage myelin, the protective covering around nerve fibers in the brain and spinal cord as well as the underlying nerve fibers themselves. Therefore, high levels of an ion channel on immune cells – such as the case with the Kv1.3 ion channel in people with type 1 diabetes and multiple sclerosis – could be likened to an over-zealous gatekeeper, somehow changing the function of those immune cells.
As part of the partnership, which began in December 2009, Axxam screened its extensive chemical library and identified modulators of the Kv1.3 ion channel activity. These modulators that were identified may hold the potential to calm the hyperactivity of the Kv1.3 ion channel that is thought to contribute to type 1 diabetes and multiple sclerosis. The renewed partnership will fund Axxam’s further research into the development of these leading compounds, and build on efforts to improve the potency and selectivity of the molecular candidates that have been identified for Kv1.3.
The initial collaborative partnership between JDRF, Fast Forward, LLC, and Axxam was the first of its kind between cross-disciplinary patient advocacy organizations, and exemplifies the value of working together to explore and develop potential new therapies that could impact multiple disorders.
Axxam and Polyphor Participate in a Research Partnership for the Treatment of Type-2 Diabetes Funded by the EU
Axxam Spa and Polyphor Ltd today announced a joint discovery research project for the generation of GLP-1R modulators. The partnership will receive funding from the EU as part of the Eurostars Program aimed at supporting innovation within the European Union.
The two companies will undertake a three-year research project with the objective of identifying and developing different classes of molecules as novel therapeutic agents to modulate the activity of the Glucagon-like-peptide 1 receptor (GLP-1R) for the treatment of Type-2 Diabetes.
Under the terms of this EU funded research partnership, Axxam and Polyphor will have the opportunity to apply their specific technologies to this complex target. Axxam will develop tailored functional assays to address the different mode of actions offered by the GLP-1R pharmacology and will use its HTS platform for identifying active compounds. Polyphor will apply its innovative technology platforms, PEMfinder® and MacroFinder® that have proven to generate promising PEMdrug candidates and highly potent and selective novel molecular entities, even on challenging biological targets.
With the advantages given by the combination of these assets, Axxam and Polyphor will probe the GLP-1R for molecules addressing different mechanisms of action, including allosteric modulators or inhibitors for receptor desensitization.
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Axxam SpA receives funding for the development of compounds for prevention treatment of disability in Multiple Sclerosis
Axxam SpA, Fast Forward LLC, a not-for-profit organization established by the U.S. National Multiple Sclerosis Society and Merck Serono, a division of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, entered a collaboration to develop compounds for prevention treatment of disability in Multiple Sclerosis (MS).
Under the terms of this agreement, Axxam will screen its extensive chemical library to develop small molecules that target the sodium-calcium exchanger NCX1 on axons. Molecules preventing the sodium-calcium exchanger NCX1 activation in the reverse mode, have the potential to preclude axonal injury and ultimately clinical disability in MS.
The award from Fast Forward and Merck Serono provides Axxam SpA with funding over a period of 18 months, and is distributed from the Accelerating Commercial Development Fund, which is allocated to for-profit entities and is designed to accelerate the development of research discoveries into new or improved therapies for people with multiple sclerosis.
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June, 22nd 2011
Axxam awarded a Research Grant by the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation to develop Novel Therapeutics for Alzheimer’s Disease
The Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) and Axxam SpA entered a collaboration to develop small molecules to treat Alzheimer’s disease by targeting inflammation.
Under the terms of this agreement, Axxam will screen its extensive chemical library to identify
compounds that block the puringeric receptor, P2X7, which is involved in inflammation in the brain.
One of the characteristic features of Alzheimer’s disease is a robust inflammatory response involving over-activation of specialized brain cells called microglia and the release of pro-inflammatory signals associated with the deposition of Alzheimer’s disease plaques in the brain. These pro-inflammatory signals are closely associated with the P2X7 receptor, putting this novel target at the heart of brain inflammation.
Compounds that block P2X7 may treat brain inflammation and can potentially be useful in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative diseases.
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Axxam SpA is happy to announce the foundation and establishment of IMAX Discovery GmbH (IMAX).
Based in Dortmund, IMAX is a joint venture between IMD and Axxam SpA in Italy.
Axxam is a leading discovery company that offers early-stage discovery services, technologies and lead discovery programs for application in the life science industry. Their tools, core technologies and activities include a wide range of screening assays, specific assay development, high-throughput screening (HTS) campaigns, compound profiling and hit-to-lead activities. The company has particular expertise in the area of GPCRs, ion channels and other flavour relevant targets.
IMD is a world class natural product-based discovery company. Founded on a strong technology platform, the company generates proprietary product pipelines of ingredients for functional foods and cosmetics, and also supports partners in research and lead generation.
Since 2008, IMD and Axxam have been collaborating to discover natural taste compounds and taste modulators, and have now founded IMAX to establish a separate platform for their successful activities in the taste and flavour arena. The uniqueness of the approach lies in the combination of IMD and Axxam’s technology platforms: by combining their technologies, IMD and Axxam were able to create an innovation engine with superior efficiency and productivity in the discovery of natural product-based functional ingredients.
IMAX offers an integrated industrialized approach to the screening, discovery, profiling and provision of innovative natural source-derived functional ingredients for various life science applications.
This “pharma like” technology platform utilizes exclusive access to one of the world’s largest natural compound collections as well as leading assay development and high throughput screening assets. This setup allows for an accelerated, efficient and productive discovery of “all natural” new and innovative flavour and taste modifying compounds.
The pre-selection of natural compounds based on criteria like target activity and toxicity evaluation through pharma HTS and natural product discovery technology will deliver pre-qualified compounds to the taste panels. As this applied pre-selection process uses harder criteria than traditional approaches, it will logically lead to a substantial increase in probability of success (PoS) in the sensory evaluation.
IMAX is currently working on nine development projects covering a broad range of taste applications.
If you would like more information about IMAX and its exciting development opportunities, please contact via email Sabrina Corazza
(Sabrina.Corazza.email@example.com) or Peter Reinemer (Peter.Reinemer@intermed-discovery.com)