AI company raises $3m to develop antibodies targeting GPCRs

Neuron and antibodies

Antiverse has successfully identified functional antibody clusters targeting two G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), both displaying versatile binding profiles and nanomolar affinity. 

The company has raised $3 million in funding, which will enable in-house development of the antibodies showing the highest affinity blocking function.

The antibodies were identified using Antiverse’s proprietary computational antibody drug discovery platform, which uses machine learning to model antibody-antigen interactions and design de novo antibodies. 

The platform was used to identify a diverse set of binders to two structurally distinct GPCRs, and following Fluorescence-Activated Cell Sorting (FACS), eight antibodies were identified as human GPCR binders. Seven of these binders were confirmed as antagonists, blocking GPCR activity.

GPCRs are a class of cell membrane receptors that play a crucial role in various physiological processes. Due to their link to several pathologies and diseases, and the fact that approximately half of all prescription drugs target the GPCR family, they are attractive targets for drug discovery campaigns.

Diseases linked to GPCRs include diabetes, cardiovascular and psychiatric disorders. Despite these connections, very few biologic therapies have been developed for GPCRs, as they are notoriously challenging to generate antibodies against.

With over 400 GPCRs linked to over 30 diseases, and only two FDA-approved antibody therapeutics existing for this family of receptors, these assets have significant potential for therapeutic applications.

Murat Tunaboylu, co-founder and CEO of Antiverse, said: “GPCRs are commercially interesting targets associated with various indications, and these antibodies offer a path to first in vivo results and can potentially be our first assets. I would like to thank our investors, this funding will enable us to continue to develop these assets in-house with our academic collaborators.”

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