$2.3m Gates Foundation grant to accelerate global drug discovery 

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Edinburgh-based PhaSER Biomedical (PhaSER) has received a Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation grant totalling $2.3m to continue its work in accelerating drug discovery and development.  

PhaSER will provide 8HUM transgenic mouse models, humanised for key pathways involved in the metabolism and disposition of drugs, to all the foundation grantees.  

These models recapitulate the ways drugs are metabolised in humans and have multiple applications in drug discovery and development: including drug efficacy, the prediction of drug/drug interactions and the more informed design of clinical trials.  

The three-year programme will make the PhaSER technology a collaborating institution within the Global Health Discovery Collaboratory Programme, which is funded by the Gates Foundation. This will provide collaborating researchers who are involved in combatting diseases such as malaria, TB, HIV, pandemic preparedness, and non-hormonal contraception with access to this drug discovery and development platform. 

PhaSER was formed in October 2022 to exploit a unique transgenic mouse model developed in a collaboration between Professor Roland Wolf at University of Dundee, CXR biosciences, Taconic Farms and Scottish Enterprise.  

The 8HUM model 

The 8HUM model has been extensively characterised and validated over the course of 15 years research and has demonstrated its ability to address common drug discovery and development challenges. One example is that the model can circumvent the difficulties in demonstrating in vivo drug efficacy which arise because of mouse specific metabolism issues. A key stage of compound progression.   

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