Compugen signed an agreement with a private U.S.-based investment company under which up to $15 million in milestone related equity financing will be made available to Keddem Bioscience, currently a wholly owned subsidiary of Compugen. This financing will be used to further develop and commercialize a technology platform that has been designed to consistently enable the discovery of small molecule modulators for potentially any given protein target.
The new investor will obtain a majority equity interest in Keddem, with Compugen maintaining a minority interest and certain future preferential access rights to utilize the Keddem technology with Compugen discovered drug targets.
The concept underlying the technology was initially conceived and developed within the chemistry division of Compugen. In 2004, the program was transferred to Keddem Bioscience.
“This new financing specifically for Keddem enables Compugen to maintain its focus on predictive biology for the discovery of monoclonal antibodies and therapeutic proteins in the fields of immunology and oncology, while at the same time offering potential future benefits to our shareholders from both our equity interest in Keddem and our preferred access to its technology,” said Martin Gerstel, chairman of Compugen and Keddem.
Keddem’s platform is designed to provide comprehensive three-dimensional information about the target’s relevant site(s), using a standard set of molecular gauges. According to the company, this set is exhaustive in nature and therefore equally applicable to any protein target amenable to small molecule modulation. The information obtained then enables the design of a variety of potent, selective, and bioavailable small molecule modulators for the target, satisfying all pre-specified drug-like properties.