NGDI Welcomes new Member Indel Therapeutics Inc.

Indel Therapeutics

NGDI Welcomes Indel Therapeutics Inc. as new Affiliate Member

Indel Therapeutics Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company dedicated to developing new drugs to address the global health crisis caused by antibiotic resistance. The company has a growing pipeline of novel antibiotic drug discovery programs that focus on curing difficult-to-treat and hospital-acquired infections. These programs are based on Indel’s paradigm-changing antimicrobial drug discovery platform, a patented technology that has opened a rich, new area of drug targets for the treatment  of bacterial and parasitic infections and, potentially, fungal and viral infections.

The Indel platform  technology allows it to identify and target discrete amino acid insertion / deletion  differences (“indels”) between essential homologous proteins that are  evolutionarily conserved across the pathogen (bacteria) and humans. Based upon  these structural differences, the Company can selectively target the pathogen  protein with small molecules without hitting the human counterpart protein,  thereby reducing toxicity concerns. And because these proteins are conserved across species,  they tend to have important roles, not only making them attractive drug targets  but also making it more difficult for the pathogen to mutate and develop  resistance because any mutation of these essential proteins could be lethal.

Indel targets, a  scientific and medical breakthrough, are thought to be one of the first new  major classes of antimicrobial targets identified in decades, and provide a way  to attack drug-resistant microbes by inhibiting indel-differentiated targets  with novel drugs.

Neglected  Diseases Program

Elongation Factor-1α (EF-1α) has been identified as an important indel-differentiated target that is conserved across the top seven parasitic disease that affect humans, including Leishmania, Malaria, Chagas Disease, African Sleeping Sickness and others. EF-1α is an essential protein that is highly conserved across all living cells and is crucial for constructing proteins from amino acids. When you interfere with protein synthesis, the cell will die. Indel has demonstrated that Leishmania EF-1α is a virulence factor that allows the pathogen, an intracellular infection, to persist in the human macrophage. This finding was a surprise since it has greater than 80% sequence identity with human EF-1α. From this research the Company identified a structural difference responsible for this virulence factor, an indel-differentiated region that has been demonstrated to be an attractive small molecule drug target allowing selective inhibition of Leishmania EF-1α. In addition to in vitro validation of this targeting approach in Leishmania, Indel also has preliminary data indicating activity and selectivity in Malaria.

The global impact of the diseases that could be treated by a pan-parasitic drug that targets the highly conserved protozoan EF-1α indel target is significant. These diseases are predominately found in developing nations, and the economic burden of these diseases on those countries comprises a significant percentage of their gross domestic product.

Leishmaniasis threatens 350 million men, women and children in 88 countries worldwide. It is estimated that 12 million people are currently infected, with as many as 2 million new cases occurring every year – and the incidence of the Leishmaniasis is on the rise.

In 2008, there were 247 million cases of malaria and nearly one million deaths – mostly among children living in Africa. In Africa a child dies every 45 seconds of Malaria, the disease accounts for 20% of all childhood deaths.

Chagas disease affects 8-10 million people living in endemic Latin American countries, with an additional 300,000-400,000 in non-endemic countries including Spain and the United States. An estimated 41,200 new cases occur annually in endemic countries and 14,400 infants are born with congenital Chagas disease annually. About 20,000 deaths are attributed to Chagas disease each year.

For more information about Indel Therapeutics’ technology and pipeline, visit their website at: