Inflection Biosciences Ltd. is developing pan-PIM kinase inhibitors that are a few years behind large pharma competitors, but the biotech's compounds can be structurally linked to other kinase inhibitors for cancer. The small molecules thus could address multiple pathways with a single compound, simplifying combination therapy.

PIM kinases are a family of serine threonine kinases involved in cell cycle regulation, apoptosis, cell metabolism and metastases. Knockout mice with PIM1, 2 and/or 3 removed or silenced are viable and fertile, which is encouraging from a safety perspective, said Michael O'Neil, co-founder and director of R&D at Inflection.