CHAPPAQUA, N.Y., Sept. 08, 2006 /PRNewswire/ — BioTheryX, Inc. (BTX), is developing next-generation drugs that selectively regulate the stability of disease-causing proteins to treat a broad range of diseases, including cancer and immune disorders. BioTheryX’s innovative approach to drug discovery exploits the exquisite specificity of the ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS). BioTheryX has entered into a strategic collaboration with Nobel laureate Dr. Aaron Ciechanover at the Rappaport Institute to employ advanced ubiquitin-directed proteomics to assist in elucidating direct protein targets and prognostic biomarkers for BTX’s proprietary small molecule Protein Homeostatic Modulators™ (PHMs™). This powerful new class of small molecule drugs will selectively modulate key therapeutically validated protein targets in oncology, immunology, inflammation, as well as emerging targets in the fields of immune-oncology and cancer stem cells.
Dr. Ciechanover is a Distinguished Research Professor at the Rappaport institute for Biomedical Research-Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, and BioRap Technologies is its technology transfer arm. Professor Ciechanover, together with colleagues Drs. Avram Hershko and Irwin Rose, won the 2004 Nobel Prize in chemistry for the discovery of ubiquitin mediated protein degradation. Along with Hershko, he was also recognized with the prestigious Albert Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research (2000). Additionally, among many world renowned organizations, Dr. Ciechanover is a member of the USA National Academies of Sciences (NAS) and Medicine (NAM).
The BioTheryX team, led by Celgene Corp. founder David Stirling, were the developers of the remarkable IMiD® family of compounds while at Celgene. It is now known that the IMiDs® (a franchise of blood cancer compounds now exceeding $35 billion) work by promoting ubiquitin degradation of key protein targets in oncology, giving the BTX team the most commercial experience in the protein regulation field.
David Stirling, Chief Executive Officer, BioTheryX, commented, “BioTheryX is pleased and excited to be working with Professor Ciechanover, the “father” of the ubiquitin-proteasome field, to advance these exciting compounds into the clinic. Our proprietary PHMs are orally available, small molecule compounds which display potent and selective biological activities and excellent safety profiles. We believe BTX’s PHMs will have clinical utility in both cancer and immune disorders. Indeed, the lead compound in this series promotes selective degradation of a well-documented, clinically validated drug target more effectively than currently approved drugs, and this trajectory could represent a significant fast track to the clinic.”
Professor Aaron Ciechanover, Tumor and Vascular Biology Research Center, The Rappaport Faculty of Medicine and Research Institute, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, commented, “The platform discovered by BioTheryX is exciting and broad, and can be applied to any substrate at will. It opens a wide window to the development of novel therapeutic modalities to a broad array of diseases, including malignancies and neurodegenerative disorders. Therefore, we are excited to be part of this novel and promising emerging approach.”