BERLIN and HAMBURG, Germany, May 6, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Evotec AG (Frankfurt:EVT) (TecDAX) (ISIN:DE0005664809) and Eternygen GmbH, a privately owned biopharmaceutical company, today announced a drug discovery collaboration to develop novel small molecule inhibitors against an Eternygen target to treat metabolic diseases using Evotec's technology platform and broad expertise in drug discovery and pre-clinical development. Eternygen is working on the sodium coupled citrate transporter NaCT, a novel target which is a key regulator of energy metabolism involved in the pathogenesis of fatty liver, diabetes and obesity.
Under the terms of the agreement, Evotec will use its best-in-class drug discovery platform to discover and develop a suitable clinical candidate.
Marco Janezic, CEO Eternygen GmbH, said: "Evotec as a world-leading provider for drug discovery and development services and its deep expertise in the area of metabolic diseases is the optimal partner for Eternygen as a project focused company to drive the development process as fast as possible until proof of concept."
Dr Mario Polywka, Chief Operating Officer of Evotec, commented: "We are pleased to enter this collaboration with Eternygen and we are confident that the combination of Eternygen's and our expertise in metabolic drug discovery and development will lead to success."
NaCT, also known as PMCT or SLC13A5, is a sodium coupled citrate transporter which is predominantly expressed in liver cells and the mammalian homolog of the INDY ("I am not dead yet") gene in Drosophila. In mouse studies it was shown that NaCT knock out protects from adiposity and insulin resistance induced by aging and high-fat diet. Therefore NaCT is an attractive therapeutic target for the treatment of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, obesity, and type 2 diabetes by influencing the mammalian energy metabolism.
ABOUT ETERNYGEN GMBH
Eternygen is a Berlin based Biotech Company founded in June 2012 focusing on research, development and marketing of NaCT inhibitors for the treatment of dietary-related metabolic diseases. The founding team consists of renowned scientists from leading German universities as well as serial entrepreneurs from the venture and industry community. Eternygen is basically a virtually company using a network of senior industry experts and contract research organizations to drive the projects forward. Eternygen is financed by VC Fonds Technologie Berlin managed by IBB Beteiligungsgesellschaft mbH and two renowned family offices. IBB Beteiligungsgesellschaft mbH is providing venture capital for Berlin-based technology-oriented companies. For additional information please go to www.eternygen.com.
ABOUT EVOTEC AG
Evotec is a drug discovery alliance and development partnership company focused on rapidly progressing innovative product approaches with leading pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. We operate worldwide providing the highest quality stand-alone and integrated drug discovery solutions, covering all activities from target-to-clinic. The Company has established a unique position by assembling top-class scientific experts and integrating state-of-the-art technologies as well as substantial experience and expertise in key therapeutic areas including neuroscience, pain, metabolic diseases as well as oncology and inflammation. Evotec has long-term discovery alliances with partners including Bayer, Boehringer Ingelheim, CHDI, Genentech, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, MedImmune/AstraZeneca, Roche and UCB. In addition, the Company has existing development partnerships and product candidates both in clinical and pre-clinical development. These include partnerships with Boehringer Ingelheim, MedImmune and Andromeda in the field of diabetes, with Janssen Pharmaceuticals in the field of depression and with Roche in the field of Alzheimer's disease. For additional information please go to www.evotec.com.
FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS — Information set forth in this press release contains forward-looking statements, which involve a number of risks and uncertainties. The forward-looking statements contained herein represent the judgement of Evotec as of the date of this report. Such forward-looking statements are neither promises nor guarantees, but are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond our control, and which could cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated in these forward-looking statements. We expressly disclaim any obligation or undertaking to release publicly any updates or revisions to any such statements to reflect any change in our expectations or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statement is based.
CONTACT: For further information, please contact Gabriele Hansen VP, Corporate Communications & Investor Relations +49.(0)40.560 81-255 +49.(0)40.560 81-222 Fax email@example.com Evotec AG Manfred Eigen Campus Essener Bogen 7 22419 Hamburg (Germany) For Eternygen contact Marco Janezic Managing Director Grit Zahn Head of Research +49 (0) 30 1207 6983 - 0 +49 (0) 30 1207 6983 - 3 Fax firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com Eternygen GmbH SophienstraSSe 6 Hackesche Hofe, Hof 6, Aufgang 8 10178 Berlin (Germany)Source:Evotec AG