4:34 PM
 | 
May 31, 2017
 |  BC Innovations  |  Emerging Company Profile

Stapling β-catenin

FOG's stapled peptide could be the first β-catenin inhibitor to reach the clinic

Harvard University professor and serial entrepreneur Greg Verdine’s new start-up, FOG Pharmaceuticals Inc., is using his latest version of stapled peptide technology to block the notoriously undruggable protein, β-catenin, in metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC).

Stapled peptides are cell-permeable peptides containing a chemical bridge (the staple) that stabilizes the core α-helix, enhancing the binding affinity of the helix and preventing proteolytic degradation. A key advantage is their ability to enter cells and block protein-protein interactions that are otherwise difficult to drug.

FOG follows in the footsteps of one of Verdine’s earlier companies, Aileron Therapeutics Inc., which uses an earlier iteration of his peptide-stapling technology. But whereas the original staples could adopt only one of two structures and were composed solely of...

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