News story

Adorial and C4X Discovery: combined firm powers drug discovery

Two health and life science businesses funded by Innovate UK have come together to create a powerful way to find and design new drugs.

DNA structure
Adorial's technology performs a powerful mathematical analysis of publicly available genetic data.

Two business supported by Innovate UK’s Biomedical Catalyst have come together to accelerate commercial and clinical success.

Adorial Pharma Limited, developer of Taxonomy3, a mathematical tool that identifies causes of disease that can be targeted by drugs, has been acquired by C4X Discovery, an innovative drug discovery company.

Adorial’s technology, which is based on novel mathematics, analyses publicly available genetic data sets generated across broad therapeutic areas and is able to mine more genetic insights than conventional methods.

Technology increases chance of successful drugs

These additional insights lead to the discovery and validation of novel drug targets with direct genetic support, which is known to increase the probability of successful drug launch.

The technique is extremely valuable in the sort of drug discovery work that is undertaken by companies such as Manchester-based C4X Discovery, as they are continually able to focus their drug discovery programmes on areas with greater potential for clinical success.

The combination with C4X Discovery’s Conformetrix software platform means the new organisation can now find novel proprietary drug targets and rapidly design and discover new drugs for multiple diseases.

Combined business has powerful drug discovery engine

Dr Alun McCarthy, former chief executive of Adorial now vice-president novel target biology and genomics at C4X, said:

The combination of Adorial’s ability to identify novel drug targets with C4X’s ability to rapidly generate molecules against these targets creates an extremely powerful drug discovery engine.

Dr Clive Dix, executive chairman of C4X Discovery, said:

With Adorial, we now not only have the ability to create the best-in-class molecules against any known therapeutic target using C4XD’s approach to ligand-based drug discovery, but also the ability to identify our own highly relevant and unique targets using Taxonomy3.

Funding from Innovate UK supported work of both firms

Adorial was founded by Alun and his colleague Dr Olivier Delrieu and was a spin-out in 2014 from PGXIS, a company based in High Wycombe founded in 2007 by Alun.

Support from Innovate UK allowed PGXIS to build a body of disclosable evidence that Taxonomy3 was an exciting drug discovery technology.

A subsequent £5000 award from Innovate UK helped the company to optimise its IT systems and make its computer-intensive work five times more cost-effective.

C4X Discovery won a Biomedical Catalyst funding award in 2014 to look at the feasibility of generating new drug candidates for type 2 diabetes. It won a subsequent Smart award in 2015 to support work to validate a potential target for treatment of type 2 diabetes.

Published 26 April 2016