Johnson & Johnson Innovation inks 17 collaborations
Johnson & Johnson Innovation has announced 17 new collaborations with research institutions and healthcare companies, bringing the total number of collaborations formed since the 2013 launch of Johnson & Johnson Innovation to more than 200. Johnson & Johnson Innovation seeks to identify and advance scientific innovation across the Johnson & Johnson segments of Pharmaceutical, Medical Devices and Consumer businesses.
The Disease Interception Accelerator (DIA) and Janssen Pharmaceuticals have formed a first-of-its-kind collaboration with award-winning immunologist Emil Unanue, M.D., Paul & Ellen Lacy Professor of Pathology & Immunology at Washington University. The role of antigen presenting cells in the initiation and progression of type 1 diabetes in humans will be explored. The ability to detect and potentially intercept type 1 diabetes in at-risk individuals before the disease sets in or insulin dependence develops has the potential to greatly improve health and well-being.
Johnson & Johnson Innovation has entered into a broad collaboration with WuXi AppTec, a global contract R&D service provider with a corporate venture arm, to source and advance potentially transformational new healthcare products. Johnson & Johnson Innovation and WuXi will each provide resources and capabilities, such as talent, facilities and funding to set up asset-centric development companies focused on the development of early stage biopharmaceutical assets and consumer healthcare products. These product candidates will be sourced globally and developed in China for the global market.
Johnson & Johnson Innovation has established a hub at Karolinska Institutet to accelerate the translation of promising science by providing emerging life science companies in the Nordic region that are working in areas of strategic interest to the Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies with investment and access to a range of resources and experience. Companies will have access to knowledge exchange and scouting programs, seed financing investment for new company formation and advancement of ideas towards proof-of-concept. This newly established Johnson & Johnson Innovation office also will act as platform to explore opportunities in the wider Nordic regional life science ecosystem.
Johnson & Johnson Innovation has formed a new collaboration with MaRS Innovation focused on identifying and advancing early stage technologies of interest to the Johnson & Johnson companies. A previous alliance formed in 2013 already has resulted in a medical device that is being evaluated in a clinical trial. The device has the potential to improve patient outcomes following a catheter ablation procedure.
A collaboration between The Lead Discovery Center in Germany, which works closely with research institutions and universities in the region to transform promising early stage projects into therapeutic candidates, and Johnson & Johnson Innovation aims to identify and advance molecules with therapeutic potential developed by the academic community that also lie within the strategic areas of interest of Janssen R&D.
Janssen Biotech has formed a research collaboration with Emulate to deploy the Organs-on-Chips platform across specific Janssen R&D clinical research programs, including Lung-on-Chip to evaluate pulmonary thrombosis and Liver-on-Chip to better predict liver toxicity, a major cause of drug failures in the clinic as well as other programs. The goal of this technology is to reduce drug candidate attrition in human clinical trials and ultimately advance safer therapeutic candidates.
While current antibody discovery technologies, such as hybridomas, are highly reliable, they are also inefficient in terms of percentage of antigen-specific B cells identified during screening. HiFiBiO and Janssen Biotech are collaborating to evaluate the company's single cell technology for genetically characterizing individual cells as a potential new antibody discovery platform. Validation activities include comparing a large repertoire of B-cell antibodies from a number of different tissues generated against a target antigen chosen by Janssen R&D.
Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, two types of inflammatory bowel disease, affect an estimated five million people globally and surgery is often required for those living with these diseases. A worldwide, exclusive license agreement between Janssen Biotech and Novo Nordisk has been formed involving NNC-0142-0002, a monoclonal antibody that has the potential to be a first-in-class treatment.
Johnson & Johnson Consumer & Personal Products and Janssen Biotech are collaborating with the BIO5 Institute at the University of Arizona, an interdisciplinary group of researchers seeking solutions to health and environmental challenges, to identify environmental components that may be protective against asthma.
Ankylosing spondylitis is a form of inflammatory arthritis that affects the spine and can lead to chronic, severe pain, spinal fusion and disability. Janssen Cilag has formed a collaboration with UniQuest, under which researchers at The University of Queensland, Australia, and Janssen R&D will work together to identify, develop and commercialize small molecule modulators of a biological target that has been implicated in ankylosing spondylitis.
Kinases are known to play a key role in the etiology of autoimmune and inflammatory diseases. Janssen Biotech has entered into a worldwide licensing agreement with Carna Biosciences to further develop and commercialize small molecules from one of Carna Biosciences' kinase inhibitor programs.
Spread through a mosquito bite, dengue fever affects nearly 400 million people worldwide each year and is a leading cause of illness and death in tropical regions. However, no vaccines or therapies are approved for dengue. BRIM Biotechnology and Janssen Pharmaceutica are collaborating to research, develop and commercialize novel therapies for dengue fever.
With an estimated 240 million people chronically infected with hepatitis B, the disease is a major global health problem. However, current therapies are unable to cure the infection, requiring most people to continue treatment for life. With the goal of developing a cure for hepatitis B, the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa and Janssen Sciences Ireland UC have formed a collaboration to explore the delivery of hepatitis B-targeted transcription activator–like effector nucleases (TALENs) using viral and non-viral vectors.
DePuy Synthes Products has entered into two early stage collaborations involving orthopaedic areas of focus. One alliance will research how advanced biomarker diagnostics could be used to detect infection, while another collaboration with an academic institution will evaluate next-generation cements for orthopaedic applications.
RNA-based therapeutics hold much promise, but chemistry and delivery continue to be a challenge. Janssen Pharmaceuticals and Arcturus Therapeutics have entered into a research collaboration and worldwide license agreement. Together, the companies will work to discover, develop and commercialize RNA-based drug products for the treatment of specified diseases using Arcturus' UNA Oligomer chemistry and LUNAR nanoparticle delivery platform.
Janssen Pharmaceutica has launched a flagship Real World Evidence (RWE) research program with Karolinska Institutet, under which researchers from the university and Janssen Pharmaceutica will study how patients respond to medicines and other interventions based on a wide range of real-world parameters, including clinical, quality-of-life, social and economic criteria. Initial areas of focus are depression, prostate cancer, psoriasis, B-cell malignancies and method development, with the ultimate goal of improving our understanding of medical interventions and treatment outcomes under real-world conditions.
Johnson & Johnson Innovation works globally with life science researchers and entrepreneurs to identify promising technologies at all stages of development and helps translate these ideas into solutions for patients. Regional innovation centers are located in Boston, London and Asia Pacific.