Type of information: Grant
Company: Forge Therapeutics (USA - CA)
Investors: CARB-X (Combating Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria Accelerator) (USA)
Amount: $8.8 million
Funding type: grant
Planned used: Forge Therapeutics will use this research award to advance its novel Gram-negative antibiotic programme targeting LpxC for the treatment of bacterial infections. In December 2016, Evotec entered into a strategic alliance with Forge to accelerate its LpxC targeting antibiotic. The alliance focuses on lead optimisation of LpxC inhibitors with the goal of identifying a development candidate in the next couple of years. LpxC is a very attractive and highly sought after antibiotic target – it is conserved across Gram-negative bacteria and not found in Gram-positive bacteria or human cells. Other LpxC inhibitors have been evaluated by biopharma in the past, but chemistry limitations (e.g. hydroxamic acid) have yielded ineffective compounds that suffer from poor drug-like properties. Thus, there are no approved therapeutics targeting LpxC. Forge, using its proprietary chemistry platform, has developed novel non-hydroxamate inhibitors of LpxC that are safe and effective in an animal model of Gram-negative infection and are able to kill Gram-negative ‘superbugs’ where other antibiotics are ineffective.