X-Chem, a privately owned biotechnology company based in Waltham, Mass., has been spun out to the shareholders of the parent company of Pharmaceutical Product Development (PPD) as an independent, privately-owned biotechnology company.
X-Chem was acquired by PPD in 2014 following an initial investment in the company in 2010. X-Chem has since partnered with nine major pharmaceutical and biotech organizations, including Alexion, AstraZeneca, Bayer, Janssen Biotech, Pfizer, Roche, Sanofi, along with several smaller biotech and academic organizations, to provide access to its proprietary DNA-encoded library to discover small molecule drug candidates against a wide variety of targets.
To date, X-Chem has established collaborations on well over 70 therapeutic programs and has licensed 16 programs to its partners for further development. In addition, in late 2012, X-Chem and PPD established X-Rx to advance certain X-Chem internal programs in the areas of oncology, autoimmunity, inflammation and fibrosis, with the most advanced program expected to enter the clinic in 2016.
Following the acquisition of X-Chem by PPD, PPD management provided strategic and financial guidance to help X-Chem advance the commercialization of its unique small molecule discovery platform and build out its biotechnology business model for future growth. Based on the new strategic direction for X-Chem, the companies decided to spin out X-Chem to further pursue its biotech focus and partnering strategies to create maximal value for its shareholders.
“X-Chem has emerged as the leader in DNA-encoded Library technology. Our goal as an independent biotechnology company is to continue to evolve our platform and work closely with our partners to fully integrate our capabilities as a central drug discovery paradigm,” said Founder, President, and CEO of X-Chem Richard Wagner, Ph.D. “Further, we will continue to seek new opportunities in emerging biological systems to co-invest our efforts to discover novel, first-in-class therapeutics.”
X-Chem also has announced a multi-target agreement with The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. The goal of the partnership is to identify and develop novel agents for the treatment of cancer. Researchers from MD Anderson’s Institute for Applied Cancer Sciences (IACS) will work closely with drug discovery scientists from X-Chem in screening X-Chem’s proprietary DNA-encoded small molecule libraries for novel drug leads against relevant cancer targets. MD Anderson will develop lead compounds that exhibit therapeutic promise under license from X-Chem. X-Chem receives research funding from MD Anderson and retains a shared ownership interest in potential products emerging from the partnership. Financial details were not disclosed.
X-Chem’s second recent partnership is a multi-target collaboration with Sanofi. The collaboration is focused on the potential development of several programs for treatments in therapeutic areas such as oncology, rare diseases and diabetes, among others.
X-Chem is applying its discovery engine, which leverages a high diversity, proprietary DNA-encoded small molecule library to seek the identification of novel leads for the Sanofi programs. Sanofi has an exclusive option to license any compounds generated in the course of the collaboration. The financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.