Scientists Present Positive Progress in the Development of a New Class of Broad-Spectrum Organogold Antibiotics

Poster and Oral Presentation at the 19th RSC / SCI Medicinal Chemistry Symposium, 10th-13th September 2017, Churchill College, Cambridge, UK

Cambridge, UK and Stevenage, UK – 12 September 2017 – Domainex and Auspherix have announced new data from their collaboration to develop novel candidate drugs to tackle the growing threat of resistance to antibiotics.

The exciting data, disclosed yesterday in both a poster and an oral presentation by Dr Jonathan Powell from Domainex at the 19th RSC / SCI Medicinal Chemistry Symposium in Cambridge, UK, describe the discovery of three distinct chemical series, all with broad-spectrum antibacterial activity against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Importantly the Auspherix compounds are active against the so-called ESKAPE pathogens1 which are responsible for the majority of hospital infections.

Founding research behind Auspherix’s antibacterial compounds, identified auranofin (Ridaura) as being active against Gram-positive bacteria. Auranofin is an FDA-approved organogold compound with a long history of clinical use as an anti-rheumatic medicine.

The focus of the collaboration with Domainex has been to develop novel organogold compounds with activity against Gram-negative bacteria and deliver a novel class of broad-spectrum antibiotics. Using their medicinal chemistry expertise, the teams at Domainex and Auspherix have explored the Structure-Activity-Relationships (SAR) of the two ligands coordinated to the central gold atom and have now demonstrated that the physiochemical properties of the phosphine ligand in particular are a key determinant of Gram-negative activity. Robust synthetic routes are now in place to enable the team to further explore the chemical space around this organogold chemical template.

Tom Mander, Chief Operating Officer of Domainex, said: “As far as we know, we are the only teams working on the challenging task of developing broad-spectrum antibiotics based on organogold chemistry. In our collaboration with Auspherix, we have made tremendous progress towards identifying novel pre-clinical drug candidates that address the growing global burden of multi-drug resistant bacterial infections.”

Dr Neil Miller, Auspherix CEO said “This has been a highly productive scientific collaboration with Domainex and I look forward to seeing the data generated with our lead compounds in rodent infection models as we move towards our goal of identifying a pre-clinical development candidate from one of our three lead series. We anticipate progressing into human clinical studies in 2019, with an initial focus on the treatment of complicated urinary tract infections (cUTI).”

“Given that our organogold compounds retain activity against multi-drug resistant (MDR) clinical isolates and they show a low propensity for the emergence of resistance, they have great potential to address the greatest unmet medical need and treat patients suffering from life-threatening drug-resistant infections.” he added.

There is a well-defined clinical and regulatory path to approval for new antibiotic treatments for cUTIs with the opportunity to receive Qualified Infectious Disease Product (QIDP) designation, which offers fast-track status and priority review with the FDA, plus potentially five years’ additional market exclusivity, thus making our focus on cUTIs an attractive investment proposition.”

 

[1] ESKAPE pathogens encompasses the six pathogens with growing multidrug resistant virulence: Enterococcus faecium, Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Acinetobacter, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Enterobacter spp

-Ends-

Notes to Editors

For a copy of the poster, please contact Domainex using the details below.

About Auspherix

Auspherix Ltd. is an anti-infectives company engaged in the discovery and development of a new class of organogold-based antibiotics for serious and difficult to treat, or potentially life threatening infections.

Its new class of antibiotics demonstrate potent and broad-spectrum activity against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria including many Gram-negative multi-drug resistant (MDR) strains where there is a global rising unmet medical need and large market potential.

The Company is utilising its proprietary organogold chemistry platform to build a pipeline of novel antibacterials with an initial focus on treating complicated urinary tract infections (cUTI). Auspherix pipeline comprises three structurally distinct, small molecule lead series currently in pre-clinical development.

As a private company, Auspherix is backed by experienced investors including the Australian Medical Research Commercialisation Fund (MRCF) and UK-based Touchstone Innovations plc (AIM IVO). The Company is located at the Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst facility, UK a world-leading hub for open innovation and centre for fast growing biotech, pharma and medtech businesses.

For further information please visit www.auspherix.com. Follow us on twitter @auspherix and on LinkedIn.

About Domainex

Domainex Ltd. is a Cambridge-based, privately-owned small-molecule therapeutics company that provides integrated drug research services to global pharmaceutical, biotechnology and academic partners. Its services cover a wide span of the drug research value chain, from disease target selection to pre-clinical candidate nomination.

Domainex’s services include recombinant protein expression and use of its proprietary technology platform, Combinatorial Domain Hunting to identify soluble protein fragments for structural biology and assay development. Hit finding activities encompass assay development and screening by means of its BioassayBuilder, FragmentBuilder and LeadBuilder platforms. The core of the Domainex service offering is multi-parameter medicinal chemistry optimisation of hits and leads – using its ‘every compound counts’ philosophy, which can save up to 30% on the average industry time from target to candidate.  For more information, please visit www.domainex.co.uk.

 

For more information please contact:

 

Domainex Auspherix
Dr Tom Mander

T: +44 (0) 7584 578 024

E: tom.mander@domainex.com

Dr Neil Miller

T: +44 (0)1438 906755

E: neil.miller@auspherix.com

Media Relations – Sciad Communications

Deborah Cockerill

T: +44 (0)7930 317 729

E: deborah@sciad.com

Media Relations – Instinctif Partners

Sue Charles / Gemma Harris

T: +44 (0)20 7457 2020

E: auspherix@instinctif.com

 

Auspherix to Present Organogold Pipeline at Superbugs & Superdrugs

Stevenage, UK – 20 March 2017 – Auspherix Limited, the anti-infectives company meeting the urgent need for new antibiotics by developing a novel class of antibacterials, is pleased to announce that it has been invited to present at this year’s Superbugs & Superdrugs conference in London, 20-21 March 2017.

Chief Scientific Officer Richard Rutter will present on Auspherix’s discovery of a novel class of organogold antibiotics and will focus on antimicrobial profiling, in vitro characterisation and mechanistic insights at 16.10 on Tuesday 21 March.

Last month the WHO published its first ever list of antibiotic-resistant “priority pathogens” – a focused list of 12 families of bacteria that pose the greatest threat to human health.

“Being active against Gram negative and Gram positive bacteria, Auspherix’s organogold compounds have shown activity against a number of the 12 pathogens on the WHO list, including all three critical threats,” noted Dr Neil Miller CEO of Auspherix.

SMi’s 19th annual Superbugs & Superdrugs Conference will host an international audience of scientific leaders, funding bodies and drug discovery scientists, providing a focal point to push industry collaboration through updates on clinical advancements and investment opportunities.

– ENDS –

Notes To Editors

About Auspherix Ltd

Auspherix is an anti-infectives company engaged in the discovery and development of a new class of organogold-based antibiotics for serious and difficult to treat, or potentially life threatening infections.

Its new class of antibiotics demonstrate potent and broad-spectrum activity against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria including many Gram-negative multi-drug resistant (MDR) strains where there is a global rising unmet medical need and large market potential.

The Company is utilising its proprietary organogold chemistry platform to build a pipeline of novel antibacterials with an initial focus on treating complicated urinary tract infections (cUTI). Auspherix pipeline comprises three structurally distinct, small molecule lead series currently in pre-clinical development.

As a private company, Auspherix is backed by experienced investors including the Australian Medical Research Commercialisation Fund (MRCF) and UK-based Touchstone Innovations plc (AIM IVO). The Company is located at the Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst facility, UK a world-leading hub for open innovation and centre for fast growing biotech, pharma and medtech businesses.

For further information please visit www.auspherix.com. Follow us on twitter @auspherix and on LinkedIn.

For more information please contact:
Media Relations
– Instinctif Partners
Sue Charles / Gemma Harris
T: +44 (0)20 7457 2020
E: auspherix@instinctif.com

Auspherix
Dr Neil Miller
T: +44 (0)1438 906755
E: neil.miller@auspherix.com

Auspherix Provides Update on its New Class of Organogold Antibiotics

Stevenage, UK – 5 January 2016 – Auspherix Limited, the anti-infectives company meeting the urgent need for new antibiotics by developing a novel class of antibacterials, today provided an update on its organogold chemistry platform and its pipeline of compounds.

Auspherix’s new class of antibiotics are differentiated from current antibiotics by their chemical structure and distinct antibacterial profile.

Furthermore, preliminary data indicates that Auspherix’s organogold molecules show low propensity for the emergence of resistance. Auspherix CEO Dr Neil Miller said, “Our pipeline comprises three structurally distinct series of organogold small molecules, with potent and broad spectrum activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, including life threatening multi-drug resistant (MDR) pathogens.

“We are currently in the lead optimization phase and are on track to progress a development candidate from one of our three lead series into human clinical studies by early 2019, with an initial focus on treating complicated urinary tract infections (cUTI).”

Auspherix co-founders, Professor Ian Charles and Dr Dagmar Alber, were in the vanguard of renewed interest in developing new classes of antibiotics in response to the worldwide healthcare crisis of rising antimicrobial resistance (AMR). Some six years ago the team embarked on a discovery programme that used phenotypic assays to identify antibacterial compounds with drug-like properties that had activity against bacterial communities in various life forms. This research identified auranofin (Ridaura), a FDA approved anti-rheumatic agent, with a long history of clinical use, as being active against Gram-positive bacteria in planktonic, biofilm and persister forms.

Mechanistic investigations are ongoing but both in-house data and recent publications from several academic groups suggest that auranofin’s antibacterial activity is a likely due to a complex MOA involving modulation of multiple cellular pathways.

Auranofin’s structure comprises a central gold(I) atom bound to two ligands, a sugar thiol and a trialkylphosphine. Auspherix has applied its chemistry expertise to modify both of these gold ligands to create novel chemical compounds which, in comparison to auranofin itself, inhibit both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, including life-threatening MDR pathogens. These include the ESKAPE pathogens (that encompasses the six pathogens with growing multidrug resistance: Enterococcus faecium, Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Acinetobacter baumannii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Enterobacter species). Its organogold antibacterials have also been shown to have a rapid bactericidal (killing rather than growth inhibition) activity against Gram-negative bacteria.

The choice of cUTI as a lead clinical indication reflects a number of factors including high unmet medical need, the profile of Auspherix’s compounds and the significant commercial opportunity: over one million patients suffer from cUTIs in the USA every year, with a high prevalence of pathogenic Gram-negative bacteria in patients with cUTIs. There is also an increasing proportion of cUTI patients who have a MDR infection that is not sensitive to standard-of-care antibiotics thus requiring treatment with last-in-line antibiotics such as colistin.

“There is a well-defined clinical and regulatory path to approval for new antibiotic treatments for cUTIs with the opportunity to receive Qualified Infectious Disease Product designation which offers fast-track status and priority review with the FDA, plus potentially five years’ additional market exclusivity, thus making our focus on cUTIs an attractive investment proposition,” said Dr Miller, adding “Given the extensive clinical history with auranofin and other members of the organogold class of drugs, we are confident we can deliver a novel antibiotic medicine to patients.”

In addition to its cUTI programme, Auspherix plans to explore additional indications such as complicated intra-abdominal infections and nosocomial pneumonia.

Auspherix has a robust and growing portfolio of patent applications that protects new composition of matter discoveries and covers a range of therapeutic uses including prevention of and treatment for bacterial infections with our proprietary organogold compounds.

The Company’s new website with information on its team, R&D, investors and business model can be viewed at www.auspherix.com. 

Biotech Showcase 2017

Auspherix will be holding a company presentation at Biotech Showcase at 9am on Monday 9 January 2017 in Room 1, Hilton San Francisco Union Square.

-Ends-

Notes to Editors

About Auspherix Ltd

Auspherix is an anti-infectives company engaged in the discovery and development of a new class of organogold-based antibiotics for serious and difficult to treat, or potentially life threatening infections.

Its new class of antibiotics demonstrate potent and broad-spectrum activity against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria including many Gram-negative multi-drug resistant (MDR) strains where there is a global rising unmet medical need and large market potential.

The Company is utilising its proprietary organogold chemistry platform to build a pipeline of novel antibacterials with an initial focus on treating complicated urinary tract infections (cUTI). Auspherix pipeline comprises three structurally distinct, small molecule lead series currently in pre-clinical development.

As a private company, Auspherix is backed by experienced investors including the Australian Medical Research Commercialisation Fund (MRCF) and UK-based Touchstone Innovations plc (AIM IVO). The Company is located at the Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst facility, UK a world-leading hub for open innovation and centre for fast growing biotech, pharma and medtech businesses.

For further information please visit www.auspherix.com. Follow us on Twitter @auspherix and on LinkedIn.

For more information please contact:

Media Relations – Instinctif Partners

Sue Charles / Gemma Harris
T: +44 (0)20 7457 2020
E: auspherix@instinctif.com

Auspherix

Dr Neil Miller
T: +44 (0)1438 906755
E: neil.miller@auspherix.com