Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research (HZI), Braunschweig, Germany
SMALL-MOLECULE INHIBITOR OF S. AUREUS A-HEMOLYSIN
Indirect-acting adjuvant for Pneumonia
Researchers from the Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research (HZI) and the Lead Discovery Center GmbH (LDC) are developing a new first-in-class drug to treat Staphylococcus aureus infections and thereby prevent exacerbation of life-threatening pneumonia. The drug is a small-molecule inhibitor of the S. aureus α-hemolysin that would disable the bacterium’s pathogenicity and ability to cause infection and disease. The drug would disarm the pathogen’s most important toxin that causes damage of lung tissue and immune cells – the virulence factor α-hemolysin. In doing so, the infection would be halted until the immune system, antibiotic or other therapy eliminates the harmful bacteria. The project is led by Mark Brönstrup, head of Chemical Biology at the HZI, in cooperation with the LDC, a spin-off of Max Planck Innovation and the Max Plank Society. Brönstrup also holds a professorship at the German Center for Infection Research (DZIF), based at the Leibniz University Hannover. CARB-X funding will help researchers progress the compounds through preclinical studies and if successful, onto clinical testing in humans.
Current Development Stage: Hit-to-lead
CARB-X Investment: Initial investment of up to $1.33m, with potential option payments up to $7.44m.
Initial CARB-X Investment Date: October 1, 2020