The School of Medicine at the University of Washington in St. Louis has joined Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals in a collaborative research partnership aimed at finding new therapies for patients with complex medical conditions, especially rare diseases that may have few or no treatment option.
The global pharmaceutical company, which has maintained a presence in St. Louis since its founding more than 150 years ago, will fund up to $ 10 million over five years to support research projects that show promise in the development of new drugs or basic support. research that probably has medical applications. Grants will be awarded in a competitive manner, with projects selected by a committee made up of experts from the Faculty of Medicine and Mallinckrodt.
"The University of Washington is a research power, and by partnering with Mallinckrodt we seek to harness that power and direct it toward specific drug research and development projects that are more likely to benefit patients," said David H. Perlmutter, MD, executive vice chancellor of medical affairs and George and Carol Bauer Dean of the Faculty of Medicine. "In keeping with our focus on personalized medicine, one goal of the partnership is to develop new ways to help people with debilitating and complex conditions that lack effective treatment options."
The program consists of two types of funds. Mallinckrodt scholarships will award up to $ 750,000 per year for projects with a high probability of transferring a research therapy to the clinic. Mallinckrodt Challenge Grants will provide up to $ 150,000 to $ 300,000 annually for laboratory investigations that are considered likely to have future medical applications. Teachers with funded projects will be the Investigators of Mallinckrodt and will have access to additional resources and services provided by the company, which include tools and experience in analytical chemistry; drug formulation support; and resources to navigate regulatory requirements for drug development.
"We are interested in driving drug discovery and moving basic science into clinical development, so we can help more patients," said Karen Seibert, PhD, professor of anesthesiology. "Our goal is to be as agile and enterprising as possible, looking for opportunities to advance drug research and development projects, especially when a clinical need is not met"
The new association reflects a growing trend in academic-industrial collaborations that adopts a synergistic approach to drug discovery. Mallinckrodt brings to the table his experience in the development of drugs and a specific interest in autoimmune disorders and rare diseases, especially in neurology, rheumatology, nephrology, pneumology and ophthalmology. The company has a greater interest in new immunotherapies, gastrointestinal products, analgesics and neonatal respiratory critical care. Scientists at the University of Washington are widely known for experience and innovative approaches in the basic sciences, which include molecular biology, genetics, immunology and other disciplines, and have a long history in identifying disease mechanisms and pharmacological targets.
"We are excited to begin this collaboration with our partners at Mallinckrodt," said Jennifer K. Lodge, PhD, vice chancellor of research at the University of Washington and professor of molecular microbiology. "Mallinckrodt has experience and resources that can help drive some of the innovative research of our scientists through drug development."
Mallinckrodt has its roots in St. Louis dating to the 1860s, and the Mallinckrodt family has a long history of generous support for the University of Washington. Such funding established the Institute of Radiology of Mallinckrodt in the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Washington in 1931, and the institute remains a world leader in medical imaging today. Edward Mallinckrodt, Jr., son of one of the founders of the company and trustee of the University of Washington from 1928 to 1942, also established five chairs on behalf of his family and bestowed other commendable gifts to the university. The Edward Mallinckrodt, Jr. Foundation also supports a number of young research researchers throughout the university.
"The research strengths of the Washington University School of Medicine are well aligned with Mallinckrodt's expertise in drug development, and we are very pleased to have this exceptional opportunity to join forces," said Steven Romano, MD, executive vice president and director Mallinckrodt scientist. "We both have a strong strategic focus to improve outcomes for patients with serious and critical conditions, and we look forward to working with our partners at the University of Washington to find ways to meet the unmet needs of these patients."