Progressing patient-derived material a 'key strategic focus,' says Evotec CEO

By Melissa Fassbender contact

- Last updated on GMT

Patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) are reprogrammed into an embryonic-like pluripotent state, enabling researchers to develop various human cells. (Image: iStock/Dr_Microbe)
Patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) are reprogrammed into an embryonic-like pluripotent state, enabling researchers to develop various human cells. (Image: iStock/Dr_Microbe)
Evotec and Fraunhofer IME-SP have signed a strategic collaboration to advance Evotec’s patient-derived iPSC platform and subsequent drug discovery projects.

The contract research organization (CRO) originally entered into​ an exclusive strategic collaboration with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME, ScreeningPort (Fraunhofer IME-SP) in July 2014.

According to the company, the most recent announcement is an important element of the existing agreement, as part of which Fraunhofer IME-SP is providing Evotec access to its technology portfolio, which includes advanced genetic characterization techniques and quality control procedures. The technology will support Evotec's patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)​ platform.

Fraunhofer and Evotec are building a technology portfolio including advanced genetic characterization techniques and innovative quality control procedures to support Evotec’s patient-derived iPSC platform and with this to initiate drug-discovery projects​,” Dr. Werner Lanthaler, Evotec CEO, told Outsourcing-Pharma.com.

The contract, financial details of which were not disclosed, will run for an initial period of two years.

For Evotec it is key to build a systematic, unbiased and comprehensive drug discovery platform that is especially suited also to define new starting points for very complex diseases​,” he said. “The constant upgrade to better understand and progress patient derived material is for us a key strategic focus​.”

In line with this, Evotec has several existing iPSC-based alliances with Sanofi and Celgene, among others.

The €250m ($293.81) iPSC-based diabetes alliance with Sanofi​ was signed in March 2015 and is slated to run five years. Additionally, in December 2016, Evotec signed a five-year neurodegeneration alliance​ with Celgene, under which the CRO received an upfront payment of $45m (€38.29).

Related topics: Preclinical Research, Sanofi, Preclinical

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