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Nuevolution Announces Drug Discovery Alliance With Lexicon Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (LEXG)


6/10/2008 7:54:27 AM

COPENHAGEN, June 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Nuevolution A/S today announced a strategic alliance with Lexicon Pharmaceuticals, Inc. aimed at the discovery of novel small molecule lead compounds for highly validated drug targets.

Under the terms of the alliance, Nuevolution's proprietary Chemetics(R) drug discovery technology will be applied to identify novel small molecule lead compounds against a range of drug targets proposed by Lexicon. Nuevolution will receive an upfront payment and will be eligible for milestone payments and royalties on compounds identified using its technology as candidate molecules progress through preclinical and clinical development and onto the market. At a future point in time, Nuevolution will have the option to expand its involvement in certain programs under a cost and profit sharing arrangement.

The collaboration will harness the power of Nuevolution's Chemetics(R) platform technology which enables both hit identification and hit-to-lead optimization by exploration of ultra large chemistry space through the screening of multiple fragment-based small molecule libraries of more than 100 million compounds per library.

The validated targets have been identified through Lexicon's Genome5000TM program where the company explored the physiological and behavioral function for nearly 5,000 human genes by studying the corresponding mouse genes in knockout animals. This endeavor led to the identification of more than 100 highly validated drug targets that Lexicon is using to build a unique and growing clinical pipeline.

"Our proprietary Chemetics(R) platform uses innovative DNA labeling to allow fragment-based drug screening at an unprecedented scale," said Alex Gouliaev, CEO of Nuevolution A/S. "We believe this generates high quality hits and leads far more rapidly and reliably than current ultra high throughput methods. Combining our platform with Lexicon's highly validated target portfolio represents an exceptional drug discovery opportunity and we very much look forward to bringing together Lexicon's expertise in biology and ours in chemistry, creating a synergistic biotech alliance."

"This important alliance is designed to accelerate Lexicon's ability to move from novel knockout validated targets to drug candidates as we continue to build our pipeline of innovative products," said Brian Zambrowicz, Ph.D., executive vice president and chief scientific officer of Lexicon.

About Nuevolution

Nuevolution is a leading drug discovery company founded in 2001 and based in Copenhagen, Denmark. The company has developed Chemetics(R), a unique, patent protected hybrid of proven wet chemistry and molecular biology which represents the ultimate fragment based drug discovery technology. Chemetics(R) enables rapid synthesis and DNA-tagging of hundreds of millions of chemically diverse drug-like small molecule compounds and the efficient screening of these, facilitating the identification of potent drug leads at unprecedented quantity, quality and speed compared to existing drug discovery technologies.

Nuevolution partners its technology with pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, and is also developing an internal pipeline by applying Chemetics(R) to validated cancer and cardiovascular targets. Nuevolution has demonstrated the power of Chemetics(R) by identifying highly potent and drug like novel ligands with the potential to address major unmet medical needs across a range of therapeutic areas and target classes.

Nuevolution is a privately owned company and has raised EUR 37 million in financing from key Scandinavian investors, including SEB Venture, Sunstone Capital, SLS Venture and Novo A/S.

For more information about Nuevolution A/S, please visit the company's website http://www.nuevolution.com.

About Lexicon

Lexicon is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of breakthrough treatments for human disease. Lexicon currently has development programs underway for such areas of major unmet medical need as irritable bowel syndrome, cognitive disorders, autoimmune diseases, and carcinoid syndrome. The company has used its proprietary gene knockout technology to discover more than 100 promising drug targets and create an extensive pipeline of clinical and preclinical programs in the therapeutic areas of cardiology, gastroenterology, immunology and oncology, metabolism, neurology and ophthalmology. To advance the development and commercialization of its programs, Lexicon is working both independently and through collaborators including Bristol-Myers Squibb Co., Genentech, Inc. and N.V. Organon. For additional information about Lexicon and its programs, please visit http://www.lexpharma.com.

CONTACT: For further information please contact: Nuevolution A/S, Danish
media, Alex Haahr Gouliaev, CEO, Phone: +45-7020-0987, ahg@nuevolution.com;
International media, Chris Gardner/Mark Swallow, Phone:
+44(0)207-0282-2995/+44(0)207-282-2948, chris.gardner@citigatedr.co.uk;
Lexicon Pharmaceuticals, Inc.: Stephen Tragash, Executive Director,
Corporate Affairs, Phone: +1-281-863-3787, stragash@lexpharma.com


Read at BioSpace.com

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