Galapagos advances IBD targets discovered using Scipher platform

Biotechnology company Galapagos will in-license drug targets for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) which were discovered using a biology platform developed by Scipher Medicine.

The move follows a deal Galapagos and Scipher Medicine made in 2020 to jointly validate a suite of novel IBD targets discovered by Scipher’s Spectra platform. Under the deal, Galapagos had the exclusive option to in-license certain validated preclinical targets for further development and commercialisation.

Now, after validation work, Galapagos is advancing selected targets into the next phase of drug development. This will trigger a milestone payment to Scipher  and make the company eligible to receive additional payments for the achievement of regulatory and sales milestones.

Scipher’s Spectra platform is powered by patient molecular data in autoimmune diseases and artificial intelligence network science-based algorithms. The platform identifies biologically similar patients and drug targets that are specific to those patients to improve response rates.

Official comments

“By partnering with Scipher, we are effectively and efficiently identifying new targets to ultimately develop new therapies to address unmet needs of people with IBD,” said Richard Janssen, head of Search and Evaluation, at Galapagos.

“Drug development in autoimmune diseases is entering an era of precision medicine similar to what we have experienced in oncology in the past decade. There is a significant unmet medical need for drugs that target a specific disease population with higher clinical response rates,” said Alif Saleh, Chief executive Officer, at Scipher Medicine. “Driven by our access to large patient population molecular data, partnerships like the one with Galapagos can bring new and more effective treatments to diseases with currently low drug response rates or limited treatment options.”

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