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Orbit Discovery to develop new peptides in collaboration with Evergreen Discovery

The Business Magazine article image for: Orbit Discovery to develop new peptides in collaboration with Evergreen Discovery
5 April 2023

Oxford’s Orbit Discovery has announced that it will partner with New Jersey-based Evergreen Discovery to identify specific cell targeting peptides and advance the development of novel radiopharmaceuticals.

Evergreen Discovery develops radiopharmaceutical drugs with a focus on the treatment and diagnosis of cancer. Together with Orbit and its expertise in the discovery of therapeutic peptide hits, it aims to design peptide libraries, hit identification, and hit validation to confirm cell surface binding properties.

Peptides are quickly becoming an appealing delivery option in the growing radiopharmaceuticals market, since their specificity, stability, and rapid clearance all help to reduce off-target toxicities. They can allow for specific binding to a tumour target of interest through targeting moieties, localising the treatment to diseased tissues.

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Dr Thomas Reiner, Chief Scientific Officer at Evergreen Discovery, said: “We are very pleased to be partnering with Orbit Discovery and capitalising on its technology and expertise in both chemistry and biology to drive innovation and expansion of our radiopharmaceutical candidate pipeline.

“The requirement for more direct screening technologies is key to successful drug development and we see Orbit as a stepping stone in attaining our goals in a rapid timeframe.”

Orbit’s peptide display technologies are to play an important role in the collaboration, as the companies work to find peptide leads specific to their chosen tumour-related targets.

The proprietary platform will harness its unique ability to perform in vitro transcription translation from DNA-encoded libraries on beads. This capability allows for screening of huge libraries using Fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS)-based methodologies, significantly increasing throughput.

Evergreen then plans to focus on developing the peptides for clinical use.

Orbit Discovery CEO Dr Neil Butt added: “Evergreen Discovery is a pioneer in the field of radiopharmaceuticals, and we’re delighted to be collaborating with the team. In conjunction with their capabilities in manufacturing, we aim to assist them in rapidly moving targeted radiopharmaceuticals into the clinic.

“This area of therapeutic drug development benefits significantly from our platform, where the higher numbers screened typically allow for better outputs and thereby reduce risk at a later stage in development.”

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Born and raised in Berkshire, Dan fell into journalism after completing his bachelor’s degree in English at UCL.

Writing for The Business Magazine and local Biz News sites has given him the opportunity to chat with all manner of small business owners and share their success stories with a wider audience.

Outside of work, Dan enjoys live music, board games and quiz shows, and is making a slow but persistent effort to learn Spanish.

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