Roche has initiated a third program in its ongoing Stapled Peptide Drugs collaboration with Aileron, which the firms started in August 2010 and covers up to five programs designated by Roche. The new inflammatory diseases program will join two key programs in oncology. Aileron says it has in addition reached a key payment-triggering milestone under the collaboration agreement, relating to the achievement of in vivo proof-of-concept.
Aileron’s platform technology has been designed to enable the development of stabilized, or "stapled" peptide based drugs, in which the peptide candidate is locked into its biologically active shape using cross-linking chemistry. The firm says the technology essentially results in stable peptides that are resistant to proteases, and which display desired drug-like properties including high-affinity target binding and specificity, and, importantly, efficient cell penetration, enabling the design of candidates against intracellular as well as extracellular targets.
In addition to its collaboration with Roche, Aileron is binding an in-house pipeline of Stapled Peptide candidates targeting cancer, infectious diseases, metabolic diseases, and immune/inflammatory disorders.