Foundation for Neglected Disease Research (India) and DevsHealth (Barcelona) announce a collaboration to discover and develop affordable drugs for mosquito-borne infections using AI/ML technology
BANGALORE, India and BARCELONA, Spain, March 21, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Foundation for Neglected Disease Research (FNDR) and DevsHealth have announced the start of a collaborative project to develop new broad-spectrum antiviral agents for infections caused by flaviviruses such as dengue, Zika, West Nile virus, and Japanese encephalitis, among others.
Flaviviruses belong to the Flaviviridae family of viruses and cause more than 400 million human infections per year. Most cases are mild infections with self-limiting febrile episodes, but some infections cause severe and life-threatening disease with symptoms such as haemorrhagic fever, encephalitis, paralysis, or hepatic failure, among others. Most of the disease burden is in low- and middle-income countries, and despite these pathologies being mild infections, the high morbidity generates a huge economic impact. Climate change is also affecting global disease distribution, and an increase in flavivirus infection cases has been seen in Europe and North America.
This collaboration has the potential to revolutionize the way flavivirus infections are treated. There are currently no drugs available to patients to treat these infections. The new treatments will not only be effective against multiple flaviviruses but will also, thanks to this international collaboration be affordable and accessible to patients who need them.
This new project will allow DevsHealth, a DeepTech company working on anti-infectious drug development using AI, real-world data and molecular modelling, to join forces with FNDR, a not-for-profit organization with expertise in drug discovery for infectious and neglected diseases, and work directly in one of the territories where flavivirus infections have a high socio-economic impact. The mix of FNDR’s capabilities in infectious diseases research together with the DeepTech platform from DevsHealth will allow the consortium to accelerate the discovery of new broad-spectrum agents for flaviviruses. DevsHealth will be in charge of in silico studies and chemistry efforts and the FNDR will manage all in vitro and in vivo experiments.
According to Alfons Nonell-Canals, CEO of DevsHealth, “This partnership will allow us to work on a high social impact project by using our technology to improve people’s health as well as to facilitate access to medicines, especially in LMICs”. This objective is aligned with the FNDR’s mission, which is explained by Dr. Shridhar Narayanan, CEO of the FNDR, “This collaboration with DevsHealth allows us to combine the power of AI/ML technologies with FNDR’s in vitro and in vivo capabilities to accelerate the discovery and development of a broad spectrum antiviral drug for mosquito-borne neglected diseases.”
About the Foundation for Neglected Disease Research (FNDR)
Foundation for Neglected Disease Research (FNDR) is a not-for-profit biotech R&D organization dedicated to discovering and developing novel therapeutics, diagnostics, and devices for diseases with a high socio-economic impact.
Since its inception in 2014, FNDR has generated a portfolio of therapeutics in tuberculosis, nontuberculous mycobacteria, malaria, dengue, leishmania, serious bacterial infections, fungal infections, COVID-19 and RSV, spanning over early-stage discovery to late-stage clinical trials, including TBA-7371, an anti-tubercular agent currently in Phase 2 clinical trials. FNDR’s R&D Centre, which includes state-of-the-art BSL2 and BSL3 laboratories for both in vitro and in vivo research, is located in Bengaluru, India. FNDR’s work using the One Health approach contributes to finding solutions to global health issues of antimicrobial resistance and pandemic preparedness.
DevsHealth is a DeepTech company that uses Artificial Intelligence, real-world data analysis and molecular modelling to accelerate the development of new anti-infectious treatments. Thanks to its technological platform, DevsHealth reduces the risk, time and investment needed in the development of antibacterial and antiviral drugs.
The company was founded in July 2021 with the mission of using technology to improve people’s health. With this mission, the company has developed its own technological platform and is applying it in the development of an in-house pipeline of new anti-infectious treatments. Its first project in the pipeline, started in 2022, is a new oral treatment for COVID-19.
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