Natick, Mass. – October 11, 2011
Karyopharm Therapeutics Inc., a leader in the new field of nuclear transport modulators, has initiated an exclusive collaboration in the area of Selective Inhibitors of Nuclear Export (SINE) modulators of the CRM1 protein with the Rega Institute for Medical Research, a part of the Katholieke University of Leuven (K.U.Leuven), Belgium. The nuclear transport machinery plays an integral role in the regulation of many molecules involved in a broad spectrum of human and animal disease. Karyopharm will work with scientists lead by Dr. Dirk Daelemans of the Laboratory of Virology and Chemotherapy at the Rega Institute on the discovery and development of novel SINE CRM1 inhibitors. Together, the groups will expand the portfolio of Karyopharm’s SINE CRM1 antagonists for the treatment of cancer, autoimmune diseases and viral disorders.
Dr. Dirk Daelemans and his colleagues at the Rega Institute have done pioneering work in the area of nuclear export modulation, particularly in their roles in viral replication. Dr. Daelemans said, “We are very pleased to be working with the team at Karyopharm, as they are in a leading position to move our combined portfolio of compounds into development for the treatment of human diseases.” Sharon Shacham, PhD, MBA, Karyopharm’s CSO and Head of R&D, commented, “This collaboration with the Rega Institute, one of the world’s leaders in elucidation of mechanism of action of biologically active compounds, further strengthens our research and development platform dedicated to bringing the first nuclear export inhibitors to the clinic for cancer and other disorders.” It is anticipated that the collaboration will discover novel CRM1 inhibitors, beyond those already patented by Karyopharm.
Karyopharm is a preclinical-stage biopharmaceutical company leading the development of small molecule modulators of nuclear transport. The Company was founded by Drs. Sharon Shacham, Michael Kauffman, Giulio Draetta and Ronald DePinho in 2008. Karyopharm completed a $20M Series A financing in October, 2010, and has won several grants/awards including a Biotech Investment Award by the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation in 2010. Karyopharm’s first program is directed towards the Selective Inhibition of Nuclear Export – its SINE program – targeting CRM1, the major nuclear export protein. By inhibiting the nuclear export of tumor suppressor proteins, Karyopharm’s drug candidates force the activation of the cell’s key tumor suppressor and anti-inflammatory pathways including p53, p21, pRB, FoxO, and the inhibitor of NF-kB (i.e., IkB). Karyopharm anticipates entering the clinic in 2012 with its first SINE for the treatment of various cancers. The Company is also evaluating the use of SINE in autoimmune, viral and dermatologic disorders. Karyopharm Therapeutics is located in Natick, Massachusetts.
About K.U.Leuven and the Rega Institute for Medical Research
K.U.Leuven, founded in 1425, is the largest university in Belgium, located in Leuven (Flanders), with a wealth of excellent research and a strong reputation and track-record in technology transfer through K.U.Leuven Research & Development (LRD). More than 6,000 researchers from more than 120 countries concentrate on curiositydriven and ground-breaking strategic research, as well as targeted and demand-driven research. The Rega Institute for Medical Research is a biomedical research institute of K.U.Leuven that comprises the Laboratory of Virology and Chemotherapy. Many patients have already been treated with drugs that were initially discovered at the Rega Institute.
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