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12:00 AM
 | 
Jun 30, 2003
 |  BioCentury  |  Emerging Company Profile

Axovan: Very particular about GPCRs

G protein-coupled receptors have long been important, highly druggable targets. Axovan SA says its Axaddis and Axocell technologies allow it to perform accelerated, focused GPCR screening by skipping traditional target validation work and using GPCR-biased chemical libraries.

The Human Genome Project has revealed more than 1,500 GPCRs, according to CFO Philippe Dro. About 400 GPCRs are thought to be pharmaceutically relevant, but only 200 are functionally known and about 40 are targets for marketed drugs. Currently, the top 12 GPCRs account for about $50 billion in annual worldwide drug sales, Dro said.

To decide whether or not to screen a receptor, Axovan examines a GPCR's phylogenetic profile, using publicly available data. Then GPCRs of interest go into assay development and screening.

"We don't emphasize target validation," Dro said. "Everyone is spending a lot of money on that. We think the...

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