Hamburg, Germany - 30 July 2014: Evotec AG (Frankfurt Stock Exchange: EVT, TecDAX, ISIN: DE0005664809) today announced the successful achievement of the first milestones in its TargetAD collaboration with Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ("Janssen") for the identification and selection of three selected targets from the TargetAD database.
These target selections were achieved under the agreement between Evotec and Janssen, facilitated by the Johnson & Johnson Innovation Center in California, signed in November 2013. Under the terms of the agreement, Janssen and Evotec are collaborating to identify new drug targets for discovery of novel treatment approaches to Alzheimer's disease ('AD').
Janssen has the option to internalize selected targets and therapeutic candidates and progress them into pre-clinical and clinical development. Janssen funds target drug discovery research via a combination of defined research payments and progress-related milestones.
Dr Cord Dohrmann, Chief Scientific Officer of Evotec, commented: "We are delighted to see the first validation of our collaboration with Janssen. The joint project team has been very productive and we are looking forward to leveraging our innovative Alzheimer's disease approaches during the years to come."
ABOUT EVOTEC'S TARGETAD DATABASE
The TargetAD database is a customized system providing unique information on the link between molecular and cellular changes in brain tissue with AD progression. This database was set up in a multi-year research programme, applying histological, cellular and in vivo target validation procedures. The database provides a strong foundation for systematic collaborative target validation and compound discovery programmes.
ABOUT ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is an irreversible, progressive brain disease and the main cause for dementia. It slowly destroys brain cells and nerves and thus disrupts the transmission in the brain, particularly those responsible for storing memories. In the course of AD, the brain shrinks as gaps develop in the temporal lobe and hippocampus, which are responsible for storing and retrieving new information. Beside degeneration of neurons, typical pathological hallmarks for AD are beta amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles composed by Tau protein in the brain. The cause and progression of AD however are still not completely understood. Like other chronic conditions, scientists believe that AD doesn't have one predominant cause, but is rather a complex result of various factors. At the moment, there is no cure available for AD and most other causes for dementia. Current treatments only tackle the symptoms of the disease.
According to Alzheimer's Disease International, there were 44 million people diagnosed with dementia in 2013 worldwide. It is estimated that this number is going to increase to more than 135 million people in 2050. Approximately 7.7 million new cases of dementia are diagnosed each year. Concerning the dementia market volume, $604 bn were spent on the treatment of dementia in 2010. All in all, these costs equal about 1% of the world's GDP (average of GDP from countries worldwide).
FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS
Information set forth in this press release contains forward-looking statements, which involve a number of risks and uncertainties. The forward-looking statements contained herein represent the judgement of Evotec as of the date of this announcement. Such forward-looking statements are neither promises nor guarantees, but are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond our control, and which could cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated in these forward-looking statements. We expressly disclaim any obligation or undertaking to release publicly any updates or revisions to any such statements to reflect any change in our expectations or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statement is based.