Eisai has launched the Eisai Andover innovative Medicines (AiM) Institute, a discovery innovation unit focused on discovering and developing precision medicines for cancer, dementia, and autoimmune diseases.
The AiM Institute will bring together scientists, technologies, and expertise across quantitative, biological, chemistry, and translational sciences, with the goal of advancing three key therapeutic areas, Eisai said:
- Immuno-dementia—AiM is studying dementia patients with immune-driven pathology, targeting immune dysfunction and enhancing internal neuroimmune mechanisms to develop treatments for Alzheimer's disease and dementia.
- Immununo-oncology—AiM is working to discover novel precision immunotherapies targeting myeloid lineage cells, Eisai said. One such therapy is E7046, a first-in-class orally active prostaglandin E2 receptor 4 (EP4) receptor antagonist under clinical development.
- Autoimmune—AiM is pursuing therapeutic targets for systemic lupus erythematosus among autoimmune indications by building on company strengths in targeting Toll-like receptors and prostaglandins with small molecules.
Eisai established the 90-scientist AiM institute as part of an end-to-end business model that efficiently integrates discovery, clinical, and commercial functions—a component of the company’s 10-year EWAY 2025 Strategic Plan, unveiled in March.
“The AiM Institute combines the focus, agility, and innovative culture of a 90-person biotech-like organization with Eisai's operational expertise and experience in bringing new medicines to patients,” Nadeem Sarwar, the Institute’s president, said in a statement.
AiM’s research, Eisai said, is organized around five scientific specialties or “engines”:
- Human Biology & Data Sciences advances discovery and validation of novel therapeutic targets and biomarkers by accessing, analyzing, integrating, interpreting and applying human biology data.
- Integrated Biology validates therapeutic concepts by evaluating genetic variants in human cell systems and in vivo disease models, with the goal of generating extensive preclinical packages for IND filings, including preclinical proof-of-concept and translational biomarkers for dose-setting and patient selection.
- Target Modulation will develop hypotheses for target modulation mechanisms; advance experiment-supported structural biology; create target specific assays; select flexible, strategic screening approaches; and provide unique compound collections.
- Integrated Chemistry explores previously inaccessible areas of complex molecular spaces to address novel and previously undruggable targets by combining expertise in medicinal, synthetic, screening, structural, translational, and platform chemistry.
- The Imaging Center of Excellence applies magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computed tomography (CT), single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), and positron emission tomography (PET) scanning, as well as radiochemistry solutions, for neuroscience, oncology, immunology, and drug safety.
AiM will pursue and maintain collaborations and strategic alliances with external partners, Eisai added. AiM’s current collaborations focus on human genetics, functional genomics, assay development, structural biology, computational chemistry, library synthesis, compound screening, and translational biomarkers.