e-therapeutics PLC (LON: ETX.L) is teaming up with Belgian life sciences giant Galapagos to uncover a new means of treating idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, a serious lung disease with a poor prognosis.
The work, which will lean into ETX’s expertise in network biology and in-silico phenotypic screening, will focus on approaches to modulate one specific mechanism involved in IPF and other fibrotic conditions.
Financial details were not provided; however, the UK company said it will receive “upfront and near-term payments material to [its] cash position”. It is also eligible for pre-clinical and clinical development and commercial milestone payments.
“This collaboration provides additional validation of our platform and its applications in drug discovery and development,” ETX chairman Ali Mortazavi said in a statement.
“Our platform is scalable and can be applied to all areas of biology, providing an engine for diverse drug discovery projects and enabling us to help partners in numerous ways,” he added.
In the US alone there are an estimated 30,000-40,000 cases of IPF diagnosed each year. The disease leads to a progressive loss of lung function and survival without therapy can be limited to between two and three years. Currently-available treatments slow disease progression but the prognosis remains poor.
Valued at £10.5bn, partner Galapagos generated around £750mln of revenues last year. Headquartered in Mechelen, Belgium, with offices in Leiden, Romainville, Basel, and Zagreb, the company develops drugs for rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, psoriasis, systemic lupus erythematosus and cystic fibrosis.
ETX’s tie-up with Galapagos is it's third with a leading biopharma company. Mortazavi said: “We remain in business development discussions for both NDD and our functional genomics platform, GAINs."