Unlocking the Secrets of Neurodegenerative Diseases: Astex and Cardiff University Medicines Discovery Institute Join Forces for Novel Drug Discovery

Astex Pharmaceuticals (UK) and The Medicines Discovery Institute, Cardiff University have joined forces in a multi-million pound, multi-year collaboration to discover novel small molecule therapeutics for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. This ambitious venture marks a significant milestone for both parties as they strive to deliver innovative treatments for those affected by these devastating conditions.

The groundbreaking collaboration between Dr Emyr Lloyd-Evans & Dr Helen Waller-Evans, the drug discovery capabilities of the MDI and the fragment-based drug discovery platform of Astex is set to revolutionize the field of lysosomal biology, and pave the way for potential new treatments for neurodegenerative diseases. By targeting compounds that modulate lysosomal activity, the teams have the potential to make a major impact on diseases caused by mutations in lysosomal and associated proteins, which are currently without effective treatments. This collaboration brings together world-leading expertise and cutting-edge technologies, and promises to be a major step forward in the fight against debilitating disorders.

MDI and Astex have joined forces with Cardiff University to embark on a groundbreaking drug discovery project. Focused on a specific lysosomal target, the aim is to identify and optimise compounds that modulate its activity. The university stands to benefit from committed R&D funding, as well as generous development and regulatory payments if the compounds prove successful, and royalty payments on any approved products. Although financial details of the agreement are not disclosed, it is clear this is a venture of major significance.

Simon Ward, Director of the Medicines Discovery Institute at Cardiff University, is thrilled to be partnering with Astex in a way that allows each partner to use their unique strengths to create something bigger and better. This collaboration is an affirmation of the medical and translational research Cardiff University has been undertaking for years and both parties are eager to develop treatments that can make a difference for those who have few other options. This partnership is a perfect example of how combining the expertise of academia and industry can help tackle seemingly insurmountable medical issues.

Astex is thrilled to be partnering with Cardiff University’s Medicines Discovery Institute to make groundbreaking advances in the field of neurodegenerative diseases. Our Chief Scientific Officer, Dr David Rees, FMedSci, FRSC, has highlighted the importance of collaboration between academic and industry players for successful research translation. Together, we are committed to creating high-impact treatments that can make a real difference in the lives of patients.

About Astex Pharmaceuticals

Astex is on a mission to revolutionize the way we fight cancer and diseases of the central nervous system. We are pioneering innovative drug discovery and development, with a proprietary pipeline of novel therapies to battle these serious diseases. Our collaborations with leading pharmaceutical companies are leading the way to bring the latest treatments to patients faster. Astex is a proud subsidiary of Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd., based in Tokyo, Japan.

About Cardiff University

Cardiff University has long been recognised as one of Britain’s foremost centres of teaching and research excellence, and is proud to be part of the prestigious Russell Group of universities. With two Nobel Laureates amongst its academics, including the winner of the 2007 Nobel Prize for Medicine, Professor Sir Martin Evans, Cardiff is renowned for its world-leading, cutting-edge research. Boasting three distinct Colleges – Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences; Biomedical and Life Sciences; and Physical Sciences and Engineering – as well as a commitment to lifelong learning, the university offers an impressive array of facilities and innovative approaches to education. Moreover, its dedicated Research Institutes are pioneering new solutions to global issues.

About MDI

The Medicines Discovery Institute is revolutionizing treatment for neurological illnesses with its cutting-edge drug discovery capabilities. Led by Professors Simon Ward and John Atack, the team at Cardiff University is pioneering a pipeline of novel drug projects, ranging from early drug screening to human clinical trials. Their expertise and industry-standard approaches are driving a new era of modern drug discoveries to improve patient care.

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