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Aug 28, 2007

Epix Achieves $0.5M Milestone in Collaboration with Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Therapeutics

  • Epix Pharmaceuticals received a $500,000 milestone payment from Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Therapeutics (CFFT). The fee was triggered because Epix identified a hit compound that corrects the functionality of the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) ion channel. A mutation in the CFTR gene is one of the key factors that ultimately leads to the disease.

    “This milestone marks further progress made in our collaboration with CFFT, and following our recent milestone achievement under our agreement with GlaxoSmithKline, provides another example of the efficiency and productivity of the Epix discovery engine and development approach,” states Michael G. Kauffman, M.D., Ph.D., CEO of Epix. “So far we have focused mainly on GPCRs as drug targets, and we are very happy to see the benefits of our in silico methodologies expand to ion channels.” 

    In 2005 Epix and CFFT entered into a research, development, and commercialization agreement that focuses on the CFTR ion channel. The company reports that this is the third milestone achieved.

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Scientifically Studying Ecstasy

MDMA (commonly known as the empathogen “ecstasy”) is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, which is reserved for compounds with no accepted medical use and a high abuse potential. Two researchers from Stanford, however, call for a rigorous scientific exploration of MDMA's effects to identify precisely how the drug works, the data from which could be used to develop therapeutic compounds.

Do you agree that ecstasy should be studied for its potential therapeutic benefits?

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