US-based ophthalmology company Santen and biopharmaceutical company twoXAR have entered a strategic research collaboration to identify new drug candidates for glaucoma.
Glaucoma is a group of degenerative disorders of the optic nerve that causes blindness.
Under the agreement, twoXAR will discover, screen, and prioritise novel drug candidates using its computational drug discovery platform for application in occular indications, with a specific focus on glaucoma.
Santen will have the exclusive right to develop and commercialise drug candidates arising from the collaboration.
Santen global research and development senior corporate officer, chief scientific officer and head Naveed Shams said: “We are pleased to have established this strategic collaboration with twoXAR, which aims to deliver new treatment options for the millions of people living with glaucoma globally.
“By leveraging twoXAR’s proprietary computational discovery platform to identify novel targets in areas of glaucoma, Santen further strengthens our R&D capabilities while expanding our pipeline of innovative therapeutic opportunities that help fulfil the unmet medical needs in ophthalmology.”
In 2010, 60.5 million people worldwide were reported to be living with glaucoma and this number is expected to increase to nearly 80 million by 2020.
twoXAR co-founder and CEO Andrew Radin said: “This collaboration is an exciting example that demonstrates how software-driven approaches can lead the discovery of new drugs rather than simply supporting existing hypotheses.
“The combination of twoXAR’s unique capabilities in artificial intelligence-driven drug discovery, along with Santen’s experience in ophthalmic product development and commercialisation, provides a foundation upon which we can rapidly discover and develop new therapeutic candidates to treat glaucoma and bring better treatment options to the millions of people living with this disease.”