MECHELEN, Belgium, July 15, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Galapagos NV (Euronext & NASDAQ: GLPG) announced today that it has entered into a licensing agreement with the HUB foundation for use of Organoid Technology for pre-clinical research in cystic fibrosis (CF) and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
Organoids are mini-organs grown in cell culture from biopsies taken from patients; these mini-organs faithfully recapitulate the genetic and phenotypic characteristics of diseased tissues. Organoids have proven to be valuable disease models for the high-throughput screening and validation of innovative medicines, bypassing limitations associated with cell-line and xenograft-based pre-clinical drug studies.
Onno van de Stolpe, CEO of Galapagos, said: "The HUB's Organoid Technology will add an exciting and cutting edge approach to Galapagos' arsenal of research methods and potentially accelerate the discovery and development of our innovative drugs for CF and IBD."
"We are pleased that the HUB and Galapagos have entered into this license agreement", said Dr. Hans Clevers Board Member of the HUB. "This partnership underpins the unique contribution of Organoid Technology to the development of drugs for patients with unmet medical needs, including patients with CF and IBD."
Galapagos (Euronext & NASDAQ: GLPG) is a clinical-stage biotechnology company specialized in the discovery and development of small molecule medicines with novel modes of action, with a pipeline comprising three Phase 2 programs, two Phase 1 trials, five pre-clinical studies, and 20 discovery small-molecule and antibody programs in cystic fibrosis, inflammation, and other indications. In the field of inflammation, Galapagos signed a collaboration agreement for the development and commercialization of filgotinib. Filgotinib is an orally-available, selective inhibitor of JAK1 for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and potentially other inflammatory diseases, currently in Phase 2B studies in RA and in Phase 2 in Crohn's disease. Galapagos reported good activity and a favorable safety profile at 12 weeks in both the DARWIN 1 and 2 trials in RA. Galapagos and AbbVie also signed a collaboration agreement in cystic fibrosis to develop and commercialize molecules that address mutations in the CFTR gene. Potentiator GLPG1837 is currently in a Phase 1 trial, and corrector GLPG2222 is at the pre-clinical candidate stage. GLPG1205, a first-in-class inhibitor of GPR84 and fully-owned by Galapagos, is currently being tested in a Phase 2 proof-of-concept trial in ulcerative colitis patients. GLPG1690, a fully proprietary, first-in-class inhibitor of autotaxin, has shown favorable safety in a Phase 1 trial and is expected to enter Phase 2 in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. The Galapagos Group, including fee for-service subsidiary Fidelta, has approximately 400 employees, operating from its Mechelen, Belgium headquarters and facilities in The Netherlands, France, and Croatia. More info at www.glpg.com
About the HUB
The foundation Hubrecht Organoid Technology (HUB) is a not-for-profit organization founded by the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences and the University Medical Center Utrecht. The HUB exploits the pioneering work of Prof. Hans Clevers, who discovered methods to grow stem cell-derived human 'mini-organs' (organoids) from tissues of patients with various diseases. The organoids, that are part of the Living Biobank, are characterized by genome sequencing, expression profiling and sensitivity to known and experimental drugs to establish a database linking genetic and transcriptional information to drug responsiveness. The HUB offers licenses to its patented Organoid Technology for drug-screening and access to organoids in the Living Biobank for preclinical drug discovery and validation. In addition, the HUB provides drug screening services to third parties. More info at www.hub4organoids.eu
Elizabeth Goodwin, Head of Corporate Communications & IR
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Robert Vries, Managing Director
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