Horizon Sign Screening Agreement with Actelion Pharmaceuticals

17 Dec 2008

Horizon Discovery (Horizon) today announced it has signed a commercial agreement with independent Swiss Pharmaceutical company; Actelion, relating to its X-MAN™ technology.

Horizon’s X-MAN (Mutant And Normal) cell-line technology provides the first genetically-defined and patient-relevant in vitro models of human cancer. These models are being used by a growing number of Pharma and Biotech companies to rationalize key steps of the ‘targeted’ drug development process, and thus accelerate and economize the burgeoning field of ‘personalised’ medicine.

The agreement covers the screening of a number of Actelion lead compounds on a wide panel of genotypes. The approach should enable Actelion to predict: (a) the selectivity of their compounds against representative patient genotypes; (c) drug resistance mechanisms conferred by secondary mutations and: (d) the patient groups most likely to respond in clinical trials.

Dr Darrin M Disley, Commercial Director of Horizon says “working with Actelion is an exciting development for Horizon as they already have experience of working with isogenic models in oncology research and development programs. In this expandable agreement, we hope to further prove the potential of our human X-MAN models in a screening environment; thus facilitating a long and productive relationship with Actelion.

Actelion will pay Horizon undisclosed fees during the term of the agreement. Work between the parties will begin in January 2009.