NTD Drug Discovery Booster

Partnership objective

Speed up the process and cut the cost of finding new treatments for leishmaniasis and Chagas Disease.

Any progress or successful new treatment for leishmaniasis or Chagas disease resulting from the Drug Discovery Booster will be attributed to the collective effort of all partners. Any progress or successful new treatment for leishmaniasis or Chagas disease resulting from the Drug Discovery Booster will be attributed to the collective effort of all partners. Copyright DNDi

What are the health needs and challenges?

Leishmaniasis occurs in 98 countries with 350 million people living at risk worldwide. Existing treatments are difficult to administer, toxic, and costly. Drug resistance is also an increasing problem. Chagas disease is endemic in 21 countries across Latin America and kills more people in the region than any other parasite-borne disease, including malaria.  [1]

Description of partnership activities and how they address needs and challenges

The project brings together Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi) and five pharmaceutical companies: Eisai, Shionogi, Takeda, AstraZeneca and most recently Celgene. By using a multilateral, simultaneous search process across the five global pharmaceutical companies, DNDi will access thousands of unique compounds, generated over many decades of research, to screen for potential treatments or cures for these diseases.

The new process starts with DNDi providing all five companies with a common chemical starting point, the ‘seed’ compound. This compound will have shown promising results against Leishmania donovani or Trypanosoma cruzi, the parasites that cause leishmaniasis and Chagas disease, but may not yet be optimal for use as a future treatment. DNDi will then select the best ‘hits’ for further testing. This process will be repeated up to three times, with each new iteration starting from an improved seed compound identified from within one of the four partner’s collections and shared with all.

Any progress or successful new treatment for leishmaniasis or Chagas disease resulting from the Drug Discovery Booster will be attributed to the collective effort of all partners, which have also agreed that no intellectual property barriers will be imposed to a new treatment if successful.

This partnership leverages support of the Global Health Innovative Technology Fund (GHIT Fund), a public-private partnership between six Japanese pharmaceutical companies, the Japanese Government and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. 

Current status (as of July 2016):

1st Seed: Hit series identified
2nd Seed: Improved hits identified by the first and second round of Booster screening have been resubmitted to the Booster process (third iteration). New compounds identified from this second iteration are currently under screening at Institut Pasteur Korea.
3rd Seed: Improved hits identified by the first and second round of Booster screening are being prepared for resubmission to the Booster process (third iteration).
4th Seed: Stopped.
5th Seed: Hit series identified.
6th Seed: Hit series identified.
7th Seed: Compounds shipped to Institut Pasteur Korea.
8th, 9th and 10th Seed: First iteration ongoing

Summary of impact and forward looking information

As of July 2015, the first compounds from pharmaceutical partners are arriving and Insitute Pasteur Korea and second seed  compounds sent to pharmaceutical partners. [2]

 

[1, 2] Read more about this partnership on DNDi’s website

Videos

The NTD Drug Discovery Booster

Partnership information

Company(ies) AstraZeneca , Celgene , Eisai , Shionogi , Takeda

Partner(s) Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi), Global Health Innovative Technology (GHIT) Fund

Type of Partner(s) NGOs, PDPs

Therapeutic Focus Neglected Tropical Diseases

Disease(s) Chagas Disease, Leishmaniasis

Program Type(s) Availability of Treatment - Technology Transfer - Scientific Collaboration and Knowledge Sharing, Research & Development - Development of Treatments, Research & Development - Innovative Funding Mechanisms, Research & Development - Pediatric R&D

Targeted Population(s) Children, General population, Patients in needs of treatment

Region(s) East Asia & Pacific, Europe & Central Asia, Latin America & Caribbean, Middle East & North Africa, South Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa

Number of Countries 47

Country(ies) Algeria, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Ethiopia, French Guiana, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, India, Iran, Jamaica, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Saudi Arabia, South Sudan, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Sudan, Suriname, Switzerland, Syria, Trinidad and Tobago, Uruguay, Venezuela

Start Date 2015

More information DNDi - Open Innovation

Anticipated completion date 2018

« This experiment could significantly reduce the time and money it takes to find new, promising treatment leads, and echoes the great potential of innovative research and development collaborations. »

Dr Bernard P├ęcoul, Executive Director, DNDi