April 3, 2012
AmorChem is delighted to announce the closing of a deal with
Univalor, the Institut de recherche
de Montréal (
) and Dr. Nabil Seidah to pursue the
discovery of a new drug to control cholesterol
. This drug will hit a target called PCSK9, which,
when blocked, leads to the
lowering of cholesterol levels in the blood.
Seidah is a pioneer in the field of PCSK9 research and has been working for many years to
develop a therapeutic application for the target. “AmorChem is honoured to be collaborating with Dr.
Seidah, a world
class scientist and leader in PCSK9 research” exp
lains Dr. Elizabeth Douville from
AmorChem. “The importance of PCSK9 was certainly highlighted recently by several companies’
announcements at the Annual Meeting of the American College of Cardiology” she added.
PCSK9 is a well
known, validated target used
in efforts to develop a new generation of drugs more
efficacious than currently used products such as Lipitor
. This multi
billion dollar market is expected to
continue to rise significantly
the next years.
“Univalor is enthusiastic about its
deal with AmorC
hem as it paves the way of a new partnership for
enhancing value for our early stage portfolio. Available funds for seed investments are key in the chain
of commercialization and represents a major challenge within the industry. We are happ
y to benefit
from this new source of funding” said Laurence Rulleau, Vice
President business development at
Univalor. “We are looking forward to providing AmorChem with many new opportunities.”
The work on the discovery of a small molecule inhibitor of P
CSK9 will be done at NuChem Therapeutics
inc., a medicinal chemistry contract research organisation, in collaboration with the researchers in Dr.
Seidah’s labs at the IRCM.
“We are very enthusiastic about this collaboration and are planning to announce ot
her deals with two
other Quebec universities shortly” comments Dr. Inès Holzbaur, from AmorChem.
ABOUT AMORCHEM L.P.
is a venture capital fund located in Montreal focused on
investing in promising life science pr
ojects originating from Quebec
based universities and research
centres. This fund is the latest addition to the GeneChem portfolio of funds, a fund manager in existence
since 1997. AmorChem’s innovative business model involves financing research
ects to enable
them to reach pre
concept (“POC”) in a semi
virtual mode within 18
24 months. The
fund seeks to generate returns through a two
pronged exit strategy: sell projects having reached POC to
large biotechnology or pharmaceutical
companies; or bundle them into new spin
out companies. The
projects will be managed by AmorChem using external resources. To that effect, AmorChem has
established a strategic partnership with the Biotechnology Research Institute in order to access its R&D
platforms. In addition, to enabling projects requiring small molecules as tools or drug leads, AmorChem
has founded NuChem Therapeutics Inc., a medicinal chemistry contract
ABOUT NUCHEM THERAPEUTICS INC.
NuChem Therapeutics Inc.
is a medicinal chemistry contract
company founded by AmorChem. With laboratories situated at the Biotechnology Research Institute in
Montreal, the company is led by Dr. Daniel Guay, formerly of Merck Canada and the Institut d
recherche en immunologie et cancérologie (IRIC).
Univalor, founded in 2001, is a limited partnership that offers to the industry the opportunity to increase
their competitive advantage through access to leading edge scientific and engineer
developed by world class researchers from the Université de Montréal, its affiliated schools and most of
its affiliated hospitals. The work of Univalor’s specialists is to showcase some of the most promising
technologies developed by those
researchers to potential partners looking for innovation in the areas of
life sciences and human health, pure and applied sciences, engineering, information technology and
for more information.
Founded in 1967, the IRCM (
) is currently comprised of 36 research units in various
fields, namely immunity and viral infections, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, cancer,
neurobiology and development, systems biology and medicinal chemistry. It also houses three
search clinics, seven core facilities and three research platforms with state
equipment. The IRCM employs 425 people and is an independent institution affiliated with the
Université de Montréal. The IRCM clinic is associated to the Centre hospit
alier de l’Université de
Montréal (CHUM). The IRCM also maintains a long
standing association with McGill University.
Business Development Contact:
6477 (office) ; (514) 887
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