Sareum Holdings plc (AIM: SAR), the specialist structure-based drug discovery business, is pleased to announce that it has entered into a collaborative agreement with Roche, one of the world's leading research-oriented healthcare groups, to provide protein structure determination capabilities to accelerate Roche's cancer drug discovery research.
Sareum will use its skills in protein engineering and high throughput protein structure determination to illustrate the precise nature of how Roche's potential drug candidates interact with target receptor proteins. This detailed structural information will support Roche's scientists in their search for new and improved cancer therapeutics by assisting lead optimisation results and providing co-complex structures for Roche's compounds.
Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
Commenting on the agreement, Sareum's Chief Executive Officer, Dr Tim Mitchell, said: "We are delighted that Roche has chosen Sareum as their partner in protein structure determination. This is a further important collaboration that Sareum has signed with a major global pharmaceutical company and further validation that Sareum is a partner of choice for structure-based drug discovery."
For further information:
Sareum Holdings 01223 497700
Tim Mitchell, Chief Executive Officer
Buchanan Communications 020 7466 5000
Tim Anderson, Mary-Jane Johnson
Notes for editors:
About Sareum Holdings plc
Sareum Holdings plc is a structure-based drug discovery business headquartered in Cambridge, UK. Sareum Limited was formed in August 2003 to discover new drugs for the treatment of cancer and to provide a range of drug discovery services to the pharmaceutical industry. Sareum's unique approach aims to halve the time it takes to discover new drug candidates.
A structure-based approach to drug discovery relies on knowledge of the three-dimensional structure of the proteins that cause disease. Once the structure is known, potential drugs are designed to 'lock-in' to the protein with the aim of reversing or arresting a disease's progression. Knowledge of the structure of the potential drugs and how they 'lock-in' to the protein permits the best potential drug to be discovered. Determining structure is a complex task and requires leading-edge equipment and experienced staff. Sareum's approach to structure determination is to produce multiple recombinant proteins primarily through a baculovirus expression system and to determine their structure using x-ray crystallography.
When the structure is determined, the Company's innovative Template Screening platform is used to identify novel chemical starting material designed to interact with the target protein. Sareum then uses its high-throughput medicinal chemistry platform to rapidly optimise these molecules and develop the most promising into potential drug candidates.
Sareum provides its specialist drug discovery capabilities to partners in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. The Company aims to successfully deliver: Programmes for complete gene-to-candidate structure-based discovery; projects to accelerate or improve the productivity of specific activities; and drug candidates for licensing at the Phase I or Phase II clinical trials stage.
Sareum joined the AIM market of the London Stock Exchange in October 2004 and trades under the symbol SAR. For further information, please visit www.sareum.co.uk