Branching out

Symic's proteoglycan mimetics branch out

With its second compound about to hit the clinic and a fresh influx of money, Symic Biomedical Inc. is lining up the next three preclinical programs for its extracellular matrix (ECM)-targeting technology. By applying each of its first five programs to a different therapeutic area, the company hopes to showcase the broad flexibility of its platform, and is creating a corporate structure to enable it to build up or spin out any area as the opportunity arises.

The first two programs were in cardiovascular disease and osteoarthritis. Now Symic has added fibrosis, oncology and CNS disorders.

"We drew a few lines in the sand in terms of which therapeutic areas we'd be building our pipeline on," said Symic President and CBO Rinko Ghosh.

Symic's technology is a platform of artificial proteoglycan mimetics which it believes represents a new class of therapeutics.

Natural proteoglycans are a diverse set of macromolecules whose biological roles vary with composition and localization. They consist of a protein core and carbohydrate side chains (see Figure: Molecules to mimic).

"Proteoglycans are native to the ECM, and they are known to protect against tissue degradation," said

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