At Ecrins Therapeutics, we believe that biology is key in identifying successful treatment for diseases. We aim to uncover completely new or poorly described biological mechanisms behind diseases. We then develop a model (cellular, ex vivo…) of the disease, allowing us to screen large numbers of compounds.
Despite the fact that millions of small molecules were already synthesized by chemists, by now only a small portion of the chemical space has been explored by drug hunters (López-Vallejo, F. et al. Drug Discov. Today 2012). Our scientists are therefore targeting the large unexplored space to discover novel bioactive molecules, carefully selecting our chemical libraries for this goal.
We then combine our proprietary biological assays with meticulously selected libraries of chemicals to perform phenotypic screening. Rather than identify a biological target prior to screening, we microscopically observe the global effect of the molecules on the disease model constituted by our team. The hit compounds identified through this approach already exhibit efficacy in a complex cellular context which is a tremendous advantage for further drug development.
Our unique drug discovery platform is designed to identify new biological targets and their inhibitors (first-in-class) which we then develop into therapeutic drugs.
Our platform works as an iterating loop including several essential steps:
- validation of hits from screening,
- identification of molecule(s) targets,
- elimination of “parasite” targets known to cause side-effects,
- optimization of the chemical structure through medicinal chemistry work,
- establishment of proof-of-concept of the selected molecules in vivo.