Beacon Discovery has entered into a collaboration agreement with Janssen Pharmaceuticals. Under the terms of the agreement, Beacon and Janssen will focus on the discovery and development of small molecule compounds for multiple undisclosed G-Protein Coupled Receptor (GPCR) targets for the treatment of metabolic diseases.
Through the collaboration, the companies will conduct research to identify drug candidates for the treatment of obesity and other metabolic diseases where significant unmet medical need exists.
"We are delighted to be part of this strategic discovery collaboration which realizes our vision to combine our GPCR drug discovery expertise with the therapeutic area strengths and development capabilities of Janssen and our other corporate partners," said Sunny Al-Shamma, Beacon's CEO.
The agreement grants Janssen an option to exercise and obtain worldwide rights to develop, manufacture and commercialize products resulting from the collaboration. In exchange, Beacon will receive an upfront payment, and if the option is exercised, milestones and royalties on future sales of such products.
GPCRs are a large family of cell surface receptors that respond to a variety of external signals. Close to 30% of marketed drugs target this receptor family. GPCR research has expanded in recent years from traditional orthosteric receptor-ligand interactions to encompass new approaches based on signaling via beta-arrestin, biased ligands, allosteric ligands, and persistent signaling. In addition, the revolution in GPCR structural biology has enabled significant advances in both biophysical methods and computational modeling of receptors which can aid in the design of new molecules to target these receptors.