Boehringer Ingelheim and Structural Bioinformatics, Inc. agree on research collaboration involving new anti-HIV compound/leads


Boehringer Ingelheim (Canada) Ltd. and Structural bioinformatics, Inc. (SBI) have agreed on a research collaboration to use SBI?s Variome? database for Boehringer Ingelheim?s in silico drug discovery of HIV protein targets. Variome? is a structural pharmacogenomics database consisting of more than 100,000 variant, 3-D protein structures of X-ray crystallographic quality. Terms of the collaboration were not disclosed.

Dr Paul Anderson, Senior Vice President R&D of Boehringer Ingelheim (Canada) Ltd., part of the Boehringer Ingelheim group of companies commented: ?We are looking forward to this collaboration with Structural Bioinformatics because of their unique proprietary approach to analyzing mutated HIV protein structures. It is our anticipation that this approach will enable us, at an early stage in the process, to incorporate mutational information in the design of our anti-HIV drugs.?

?We are excited about this research collaboration as it will enable Boehringer Ingelheim scientists to predict drug activity and rapidly prioritize early-stage compounds,? stated Edward T. Maggio, Ph.D., Chairman and CEO of Structural Bioinformatics, Inc. ?Our initial focus has been on the creation of the world?s most comprehensive structural variant database for the HIV protease and reverse transcriptase. We expect to move forward into anti-bacterial targets next,? Dr Maggio added.

SBI?s Variome? database of 3-D protein structures is derived from the DNA sequences of known disease targets isolated from more than 30,000 individual patient samples. Variome ? structures provides the key to determining the interactions between a drug and its polymorphic targets, allowing researchers to account for patient-to-patient differences in drug activity. By incorporating protein structural knowledge at the design stages of drug discovery, drug candidates can be synthesized against the greatest number of polymorphic variations of an active binding site, permitting the assessment of drug efficacy prior to conducting clinical trials.

Variome ? data are derived from viral genotypes taken from patient specimens that have been analyzed by SBI?s partner, Quest Diagnostics. To protect the confidentiality of patient records, all data in the Variome ? database have been stripped of clinical information, rendering it anonymous.

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