LDC and Boehringer Ingelheim Join Forces

Novel Approach for the Treatment of Schizophrenia

13-May-2016 - Germany

The Lead Discovery Center GmbH (LDC), Max Planck Innovation GmbH and Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH have signed an agreement providing Boehringer Ingelheim with the option to receive the exclusive rights to a new lead compound for the treatment of schizophrenia to be discovered and developed at the LDC.

The novel approach builds on research results from Prof. Moritz Rossner and his team at the Max Planck Institute of Experimental Medicine in Göttingen. He will work closely together with the LDC team to identify and optimize novel compounds with strong therapeutic potential and develop it further to the stage of a validated pharmaceutical lead with in vivo efficacy. Moritz Rossner holds also a Professorship at Ludwig Maximilians University, Munich and is a co-founder of Systasy Bioscience GmbH.

Schizophrenia is a chronic, severe and disabling mental disorder ranked among the 12 most debilitating diseases by the World Health Organization. It affects about 1 in 100 people worldwide, changing the way they behave, think and perceive the world. Although anti-psychotic medications and psychosocial interventions can effectively reduce symptoms and improve patients’ lives, there remainsa strong need for new drugs truly addressing causative mechanisms and cognitive impairment.

“Schizophrenia is an incredibly complex disorder which dramatically changes the life of the individual affected,” says Prof. Rossner. “We believe our approach holds strong potential to improve the treatment options for patients, and this collaboration with the LDC and Boehringer Ingelheim is a great opportunity to advance it from our laboratory into pharmaceutical development.”

In this early discovery project Boehringer Ingelheim will take a seat on the project development team and will pay an option fee. In addition, the company will allocate internal resources to the programand support collaborating partners to strengthen the early development work. Once the project has attained proof-of-concept in relevant invivo models Boehringer Ingelheim can exclusively license the lead at pre-defined terms for subsequent preclinical and clinical development. Any revenue the LDC may receive from commercialization will be shared with the academic inventors and collaborating institutions.

“Since the LDC’s inception, we have been in close contact with Boehringer Ingelheim, establishing a relationship based on mutual trust over the years. We very much appreciate their expertise and commitment to driving forward innovative therapeutic approaches,”says Dr. Bert Klebl, CEO of the LDC. “It is a great pleasure for us to be launching our first joint project in the field of mental disorders, which we believe is often underestimated. We see strong commercial opportunities here, and there is already a strong line-up of promising projects in this area from our academic network.”

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