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NEOMED and AstraZeneca Canada Inc. (AZN) Broaden Strategic Alliance in Discovery Research, Share Compound Libraries


5/30/2013 9:31:15 AM

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MONTREAL, May 29, 2013 /CNW/ - NEOMED and AstraZeneca announced today the expansion of their strategic partnership, further enabling NEOMED's mission of delivering novel therapeutic solutions for unmet medical needs. AstraZeneca will provide NEOMED access to up to 250,000 high-quality compounds from its small molecule compound library to be used to identify candidate compounds for selected targets. The goal is to identify compounds that could potentially become new medicines for a broad range of diseases.

Under the terms of the agreement, NEOMED will work with academic researchers and AstraZeneca scientists to identify active compounds and progress them into pharmaceutical lead candidates to achieve in vivo proof-of-concept, one of the key steps in developing new medicines. Using High Throughput Screening, initial chemical starting points (hits) for innovative targets emerging from academic research will be identified from this compound collection. This step will be performed by NEOMED's network of partners and collaborators.

"This exceptional collection of high-quality compounds will be very useful to identify early chemical starting points for novel targets identified by academic institutions," said Philippe Walker, Chief Scientific Officer of NEOMED. "This new collaboration is fully aligned with our key objectives to stimulate translational research and deliver innovative therapeutics for unmet medical needs."

"We are very pleased to expand our relationship with AstraZeneca with this collaboration. We hope that this initiative will be followed by other pharmaceutical companies as an example of how a public-private alliance can transform the way in which they identify new medicines," said Max Fehlmann, President and Chief Executive Officer of NEOMED and the NEOMED Institute.

"Linking industry and academia can help advance the discovery of potential new medicines in a broad range of disease areas for patients who desperately need them," said Peter Simpson, Director of Screening Sciences at AstraZeneca. "This collaboration with NEOMED is part of AstraZeneca's efforts to share our compound libraries and to support the generation of quality lead series for important and novel drug targets."

"Today's research announcement is another important milestone in the relationship between AstraZeneca Canada, the NEOMED Institute, and the Canadian scientific community," said Elaine Campbell, President of AstraZeneca Canada Inc. "We're proud to be announcing another unique Canadian collaboration in health sciences research, one which will advance drug discovery and support biopharmaceutical advances that improve the health of patients across a number of important disease areas."

About NEOMED and the NEOMED Institute
NEOMED is a not-for-profit, public-private Pharma alliance dedicated to drug discovery and development, acting as a foster home for promising assets emerging from academia and biotechnology companies. NEOMED provides industry-level expertise and funding to bring emerging therapeutic approaches up to human proof-of-concept, a stage where the projects will become attractive to the biopharmaceutical industry. NEOMED is funded jointly by AstraZeneca, Pfizer and the Ministère des finances et de l'Économie du Québec.

NEOMED is established within the NEOMED Institute, a state-of-the-art R&D facility in the Montreal Technoparc. The Institute acts as an open-access drug discovery hub hosting commercial groups and providing a unique environment to foster innovation, collaboration and creativity.

For more information, please visit: www.neomed.ca

About AstraZeneca
AstraZeneca is a global, innovation-driven biopharmaceutical business that focuses on the discovery, development and commercialization of prescription medicines, primarily for the treatment of cardiovascular, metabolic, respiratory, inflammation, autoimmune, oncology, infection and neuroscience diseases. AstraZeneca operates in over 100 countries and its innovative medicines are used by millions of patients worldwide. For more information please visit: www.astrazeneca.com

AstraZeneca Canada recently announced the donation of $35 million to the NEOMED Institute. This donation includes land, a state-of-the-art research facility, and leading-edge laboratory equipment. It also includes the donation of intellectual property to three AstraZeneca pain molecules and projects, as well as $5 million to support the activities of the Institute. AstraZeneca's Canadian headquarters are located in Mississauga, Ontario.

SOURCE AstraZeneca Canada Inc.



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