Conformetrix Announces Details of Lead Proprietary Program Company Investigating Selective Orexin-1 Receptor Inhibitors

Published: Dec 13, 2012

Manchester, UK, December 17 2012 – Conformetrix Ltd, a leader in optimising drug discovery and design, is pleased to announce progress in its lead proprietary programme, focused on selective inhibition of the orexin-1 receptor (OX1R). The company has generated a series of potent antagonists, which it plans to evaluate and progress to drug leads. Orexin is a neurotransmitter believed to play a role in a broad range of behavioural conditions, from sleep disorders to addiction.

While there are two receptors for orexin, OXR1 and OXR2, emerging prec linical data supports the use of selective OXR1 antagonists in the treatment of disorders specifically associated with panic, anxiety and compulsive behaviours. Using its proprietary NMR-based technology for structural determination, Conformetrix has built a universal 3D (or “pharmacophore”) map of existing OXR1 and OXR2 binders. The company was able to use this to design low nanomolar inhibitors with substantial selectivity for OXR1 over OXR2 in just a few months.

Dr Clive Dix, Chairman of Conformetrix, said, ‘Our ability to rapidly design these antagonists highlights the disruptive nature of Conformetrix’s technology and its potential to significantly increase the efficiency of the drug discovery process. Orexin represents the first of several therapeutically important targets to which Conformetrix is applying its technology, about which we intend to make similar announcements over the course of 2013.'

For further information please contact:

Conformetrix Ltd

Sam Williams, CEO +44 (0)7881 588947

Emma Palmer Foster, Strategic Communications Consultant +44 (0)7880 787185

About Conformetrix Ltd

Conformetrix is a Manchester, UK-based company focused on optimising drug discovery and design. It was founded in 2008 as a spin-out from the University of Manchester. The company uses its NMR-based technology to solve the dynamic 3D structures of a broad range of biomolecules, including peptides, cofactors, oligonucleotides and carbohydrates. Since Conformetrix's NMR technology shows what shapes molecules adopt when they are active, it provides high-quality templates for drug discovery and design, and valuable information for drug candidate optimisation. In addition, the data is generated faster and more cheaply than by standard techniques such as X-ray crystallography. Conformetrix has solved structures for several large pharmaceutical companies, as well as developing proprietary drug programmes, and recently signed a collaboration with AstraZeneca. It has been funded since inception by specialist life science investor Aquarius Equity Partners. For more information, please go to

About Conformetrix's technology

Conformetrix’s NMR technology determines accurate three-dimensional structures - or conformations - of drug molecules in their bioactive states. This is achieved without the need for traditional structural information regarding the protein target of each drug, thereby providing researchers with valuable information on how development-stage compounds are likely to interact with their targets. This new information should improve the efficiency and quality of the lead identification, lead optimisation and candidate selection stages of drug discovery programmes.

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