Servier and Treventis begin strategic research partnership in neurodegenerative diseases

Paris (France) and Toronto (Canada), 4 January 2018 – Servier and Treventis announce strategic research partnership in targeting misfolded proteins implicated in neurodegenerative diseases. The collaboration covers a large drug discovery program targeting both tau and amyloïde-β (Aβ), two key proteins involved in Alzheimer’s disease. This therapeutic strategy aims to provide patients with a drug that slows the progression of pathology in the brain, thereby minimizing functional decline through a disease-modifying mechanism. 

Servier and Treventis will jointly develop compounds that act as inhibitors of tau and Ab oligomer formation, identified by Treventis’ Common Conformational Morphology (CCM) platform technology. The collaboration will also include the development and validation of translational biomarkers to support the preclinical program, allow the characterization and selection of patient populations and track disease progression in the clinic.

Under the terms of the agreement, Treventis and Servier will co-develop the programs until selection of a Phase 1 candidate. Servier will fund all research costs and will have exclusive worldwide rights to develop and commercialize any selected compounds.

“Servier has been engaged in the development of therapies targeting neurodegenerative disorders for more than a decade. We very much hope that this new collaboration will allow us to answer the huge unmet patient need for disease-modifying treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, thanks to Treventis’ unique and innovative technology”, said Christian de Bodinat, Director of Servier’s Center of Therapeutic Innovation in neuropsychiatry. “We are very excited to be part of one of the first programs employing a dual approach in this field”.

With more than 10 years of experience in this field, Treventis has a unique and revolutionary process for identifying small molecules to neutralize misfolded proteins, such as those implicated in Alzheimer’s (beta-amyloid and tau) and in other neurodegenerative diseases (Parkinson’s disease, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis).

Therapeutic targeting of intrinsically disordered proteins such as tau and Aβ peptide by small molecules is a major challenge because of their heterogeneous conformational properties. Treventis scientists identified a common binding site based on epitope commonality between multiple misfolded amyloid proteins. This information was used to create CCM, a proprietary methodology for constructing models of the earliest stages of protein misfolding. Using CCM for in silico screening allows for the identification and optimization of numerous classes of potent, drug-like compounds –making structure-based design a reality for anti-amyloid drug discovery.

We are very excited to work with Servier to progress new therapies for neurodegenerative diseases,” said L. William McIntosh, Board Chairman of Treventis. “We believe that the combination of Treventis’ innovative platforms and technologies with Servier’s deep expertise in central nervous system drug development has significant potential to rapidly advance new treatments for patients in need.

About Servier

Servier is an international pharmaceutical company governed by a non-profit foundation, with its headquarters in France (Suresnes). With a strong international presence in 148 countries and a turnover of 4.152 billion euros in 2017, Servier employs 21,600 people worldwide. Entirely independent, the Group reinvests 25% of its turnover (excluding generic drugs) in research and development and uses all its profits for development. Corporate growth is driven by Servier’s constant search for innovation in five areas of excellence: cardiovascular, immune-inflammatory and neuropsychiatric diseases, cancers and diabetes, as well as by its activities in high-quality generic drugs.

Servier has a solid commitment to neuropsychiatry and to proposing innovative therapies to patients suffering from neurological conditions. Its research teams are investigating new ways of treating diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, as well as a broad range of neurodegenerative disorders, by targeting the toxic proteins that lead to neuron degeneration. The priority is to focus on the causes of the diseases rather than their symptoms. Currently, there are 5 projects at different stages of research and development in this promising area. This portfolio of innovative treatments is being developed with academic and industrial partners worldwide.

More information: www.servier.com

About Treventis

Treventis is headquartered in Pennsylvania and has research operations in Halifax and Toronto, Canada. The company is focused on the discovery and development of disease-modifying small molecule drugs for a variety of protein misfolding diseases including Alzheimer’s. In addition to its therapeutic programs, Treventis has a novel diagnostic approach for early diagnosis and monitoring treatment effects in Alzheimer’s disease. More information: www.treventis.com