INDIANAPOLIS, May 14, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE: LLY) and Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute today announced that they will collaborate to discover and develop immunological therapies. Lilly and Sanford-Burnham, a non-profit medical research institute, will investigate potential therapeutics using biotechnology approaches in targeting multiple immune checkpoint modulators for the treatment of immunological diseases such as lupus, Sjögren's Syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease and other autoimmune disorders.
The comprehensive research collaboration is driven by Lilly's world-class biotechnology capabilities and expertise in immunology, and Sanford-Burnham's deep expertise in understanding the fundamental cellular pathways regulating the immune system focusing on the immune checkpoint networks. This high degree of interaction will allow the organizations to flexibly and efficiently advance projects to clinical investigation. The research collaboration will be co-chaired by Thomas F. Bumol, Ph.D., senior vice president, biotechnology and immunology research at Lilly, and Carl Ware, Ph.D., director, Infectious and Inflammatory Diseases Center at Sanford-Burnham.
"Immunology is an important research area of focus for Lilly, and through this exciting collaboration with Sanford-Burnham, our scientists can discover and develop new medicines together in a seamless way that takes advantage of each group in a family of key targets," said Bumol.
Lilly has established its presence in immunology in recent years through its own R&D and collaborations, with seven molecules currently in the pipeline for conditions such as psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and inflammatory bowel disease. Sanford-Burnham's work in this area focuses on cell communication pathways that control the development of lymphocytes, innate and adaptive immune responses, and inflammation. Their work has led to the discovery of molecular targets for the development of treatments for immunological and inflammatory diseases, and cancer.
"The Lilly-Sanford-Burnham collaboration is precedent setting in scope and its potential to advance discoveries to the patient more efficiently," said Sanford-Burnham CEO Perry Nisen, M.D., Ph.D. "By combining the deep knowledge of human biology and disease mechanisms among Sanford-Burnham scientists, in particular our expertise in the field of checkpoint regulators in the immune system, and Lilly's leadership position in the development of biologics and large molecules, we are forging the path to develop the next generation of transformative treatments for autoimmune disease."
About Eli Lilly and Company
Lilly is a global healthcare leader that unites caring with discovery to make life better for people around the world. We were founded more than a century ago by a man committed to creating high-quality medicines that meet real needs, and today we remain true to that mission in all our work. Across the globe, Lilly employees work to discover and bring life-changing medicines to those who need them, improve the understanding and management of disease, and give back to communities through philanthropy and volunteerism. To learn more about Lilly, please visit us at www.lilly.com and newsroom.lilly.com/social-channels. (C-LLY)
About Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute
Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute is dedicated to discovering the fundamental molecular causes of disease and devising the innovative therapies of tomorrow. Sanford-Burnham takes a collaborative approach to medical research with major programs in cancer, neurodegeneration and stem cells, diabetes, and infectious, inflammatory, and childhood diseases. The Institute is recognized for its National Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Center, its NIH-designated Neuroscience Center Cores, and expertise in drug discovery technologies. Sanford-Burnham is a nonprofit, independent institute that employs more than 1,000 scientists and staff in San Diego (La Jolla), Calif., and Orlando (Lake Nona), Fla. For more information, visit us at sanfordburnham.org. Sanford-Burnham can also be found on Facebook at facebook.com/sanfordburnham and on Twitter @sanfordburnham.
This press release contains forward-looking statements about the preclinical collaboration between Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute and Lilly and reflects Lilly's current beliefs. However, there are substantial risks and uncertainties in the process of drug research, development, and commercialization. There is no guarantee that the collaboration will yield successful results or that either company will achieve the anticipated benefits. For further discussion of these and other risks and uncertainties, see Lilly's most recent 10-K and 10-Q filings with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. Except as may be required by law, Lilly undertakes no duty to update forward-looking statements to reflect events occurring after the date of this release.
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SOURCE Eli Lilly and Company; Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute