Sage Bionetworks, AstraZeneca enter cancer research collaboration

Published on March 18, 2011 at 9:21 AM · No Comments

Sage Bionetworks and AstraZeneca have initiated a collaboration to make new insights into certain cancers using advanced computational models of disease genetics. This deeper understanding of cancer will potentially help better match patients with appropriate treatments and might one day lead to new cancer therapeutics.

“Sage Bionetworks gets to work with an industry innovator and the resultant computational models will be placed in our public repository and available to all researchers following the completion of the project. Most importantly, we hope patients will gain better drugs.”

The partnership will combine Sage Bionetworks' expertise in computer models of disease genetics with AstraZeneca's extensive knowledge and expertise of oncology including access to data on AstraZeneca's compounds. It will focus on investigating regulatory pathways among different cancers using large coherent cancer genomic datasets and predictive disease models developed at Sage Bionetworks. This will potentially provide data-driven rationales for prioritizing therapeutic targets for developing new insights to improve cancer treatments, as well as potentially helping to identify cancer patient subpopulations that will most likely benefit from such treatments. The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Dr. Jonathan Derry, Vice President of Research at Sage Bionetworks noted, "This is an exciting opportunity to combine what we have learned about complex genetic networks with the outstanding resources and scientists at AstraZeneca."

Dr. Susan Galbraith, Vice President and Head of Oncology Innovative Medicines Unit at AstraZeneca said: "We are looking forward to collaborating with Sage Bionetworks to build realistic, predictive models of cancers to expand our current understanding of these diseases and potentially harness that knowledge into new target identification, portfolio positioning and patient selection all of which we hope will lead to new treatment options for patients."

"Everyone truly wins in this project," noted Dr. Stephen Friend, President of Sage Bionetworks. "Sage Bionetworks gets to work with an industry innovator and the resultant computational models will be placed in our public repository and available to all researchers following the completion of the project. Most importantly, we hope patients will gain better drugs."

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Sage Bionetworks

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